Surprising Debate: Rabbi Lapin asks Penn Jillette if he thinks world would be better if all Muslims became Evangelical

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Tonight on The Glenn Beck Program, Glenn invited two of his favorite people, atheist Penn Jillette and Rabbi Daniel Lapin, onto the show to debate morality, faith, and religion. It was an amazing discussion and the three didn’t agree on everything, but it was a thoughtful and deep conversation that is a must watch for anyone interested in honest conversations about ethics and God.

“What unifies is certainly not our theologies but it certainly is our ethic,” Rabbi Lapin said before turning to Penn Jillete,”But when we say religion can make good people do bad things – I think we’ve got to not lump all religions together Here’s a really blunt question: Would the world be a better or worse place if a billion Mulsims became evangelical Christians tomorrow?”

Penn was stunned and left speechless, and Glenn jokingly grabbed a bag of popcorn and ate it laughing as he waited for answer.

“All other things being equal? Then I think yes,” Penn said.

He continued, “The argument is made by me that the celebration of faith, the glorification of faith, and faith being defined as The Bible does as belied without proof is not something that i feel is good to celebrate. To answer the question about evil – I always find that evil takes responsibility away. I want to have -whether it’s me or a criminal – I want to have full responsibility of my mistakes. And I think when you have this image [of an angel and a devil]…pulling you one direction or another. That idea of evil is an idea that is anti-responsibility.”

Glenn agreed that religion can go bad, noting that there are people in each and every faith who can be an embarrassment through their actions.

Glenn also said that in his faith it is really important to be a a good example and that he has a problem with “saying ‘let’s go get people baptized'”. Instead, he believes it’s important to be a good example and a good person and if others are led to ask questions about faith as a result then that’s great.

Rabbi Lapin, Glenn, and Penn also delved into where morality comes from when you are an atheist. Penn said that there is a morality that exists outside of God, and he joked that whenever he is asked what stops him from doing something evil – like raping or killing – it’s that he simply doesn’t want to.

“There is a logic to morality, there is a heart to morality, and I think you can do it. I think the number of people that you should want to rape and kill should be zero,” Penn said.

Rabbi Lapin said to some extent he agreed with Penn, but he’s not sure that it’s true on every corner in America or the world and doubted that everyone defaulted to the same morality.

“I’m a little skeptical of it because there are so many instances of smart and intelligent people…who if there is an intrinsic and automatic natural morality implanted into humanity – why aren’t they feeling it?” Lapin said.

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The three also discussed coincidences and how they work from the perspectives of an atheist and from people of faith.

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  • MarsBarsTru7

     Rabbi Daniel Lapin – Knocks a home run in making his point. Thank you Rabbi.

  • Draxx

    I was raised, “You do the right thing to do, simply because it is the right thing to do…”, you should never stop yourself from doing something good!  Whether it is planned or random acts of kindness…

    It can easily and Positively Affect People, and turn a bad day into a good one, give them hope that all kindness is not lost, or encourage them to do something nice for someone else just because you took the time to do it for them!

  • Anonymous

    The world has many erroneous attitudes about the true nature of Christians and Christianity primarily because we have erroneous attitudes about Jesus who is the Christ of God;  whom God commands all people everywhere to repent in the name of for the forgiveness of sin. Sadly a few professing Christians reinforce this thinking by doing things like burning the Koran and blowing up abortion clinics. It isn’t that fewer abortions and Koran readings wouldn’t be good. It’s that the method obscures the message of individual responsibility and repentance unto life taught by Jesus. If I burn a Koran I’ve done nothing but infuriate my Muslim neighbor. If he is convinced in the profitability of burning his own copy of the book because the burning of it serves Jesus the Lord, then he glorifies God and is blessed himself. The job of the disciple of Christ is to tell people the truth about Him so that everyone will repent in their own way; some by turning from sexual sin, some by stopping the practice of abortion and some by turning from trust in Mohamed to Jesus, etc.  In the book of Acts Jesus disciples burned their own books on sorcery.

  • Pamela Peltonen

    Rabbi Lapin didn’t get to speak much, but when he did, it was powerful. He knocked it out of the ballpark with one question. Rabbi is amazing!

    • Anonymous

      What was it that the Rabbi was postulating?  Was it that Muslims are less moral or good than Christians?  Or that the Islamic religion is less ethical than Christianity? Or was he suggesting that the world would be a better place, if it were more homogeneous world in terms of religion, faith, and/or in the name of God?  His opening statements seem to indicate that it was our ethics that united us, not our theocracy.  

      Is there truly merit to such a question? If so, is there any use in wondering if the world would be better if a million Christians were instead Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, or Atheist?

      Perhaps it is worth remembering some of the wisdom of our founding fathers.

      “I never told my own religion, nor scrutinized that of another.  I never attempted to make a convert, nor wished to change another’s creed.  I have ever judged of the religion of others by their lives… For it is in our lives, and not from our words, that our religion must be read.”- Thomas Jefferson, letter to Margaret Bayard Smith, August 6, 1816

      “No point of Faith is so plain, as that Morality is our Duty; for all Sides agree in that.  A virtuous Heretick shall be saved before a wicked Christian.”- Benjamin Franklin, “Dialogue between Two Presbyterians,” April 10, 1735

      • Pamela Peltonen

        There is merit in all questions so long as they are honest ones.

      • Pam Turner Breen

         Muslims can not really be classified as religious…they are evil…theres no such thing as a good muslim, they all follow the same koran which teaches to kill all infidels….how is that GOOD??? there may be radical extreme muslims …but all want to kill US…Mohammed taught evil..taught to belittle women etc…none of that can be good 

        • Rob Rickmon

          You mean like the bible instructs us to stone sinners?

          The bible also teaches the subjugation of women to their husbands.  The Muslim and Christian religions are not as far apart as you would want to believe, especially since they share a common origin.

          • Ian Johnson

             There is a HUGE difference between wives obeying their husbands (Christianity), and beating and killing a wife (Islam). The Bible instructs a husband to LOVE his wife as Christ loved the church.  Meaning that a man should be willing to give his life for the sake of his bride, not take her life.

          • Shannon Fleming

            You obviously don’t know what biblical submission means. The  word submit as in the NT was a Greek military term meaning “to arrange [troop divisions] in a military fashion under the command of a leader”. In non-military use, it was “a voluntary attitude of giving in, cooperating, assuming responsibility, and carrying a burden”. And the only thing Islam and Christianity have in common is that they come from the lineage of Abraham.

          • Greg Williams

            The lineage of Abraham isn’t religious, its humanity.  Nothing to do with religion.

          • Anonymous

             The stoning of sinners is Old Testament. That is not advocated in the New Testament which shows a loving God. The Old Testament is more of a history book showing the beginnings. The New Testament of the Bible shows how to live your life according to the Gospel.

            Using Old Testament examples as typical of Christianity (there are no Christians until after Jesus) is deflection.

          • Rob Rickmon

            Careful, the book of Leviticus and the almost global damnation of homosexuality is also old testament.  Jesus never mentioned Homosexuals.  You can’t say that stoning sinners was old testament and doesn’t count, but Leviticus is still relevant.

            NOTE:  I don’t know your views on this subject, and this is not an attack on your belief.

          • Anonymous

            Jesus did however state what constituted a marriage. Matthew 19:4-6 states very plainly what makes a marriage. Same disclaimer that you had, etc.

          • BigDaddyDK

             Jesus Himself was not a Christian. He was a Jew and came to share the message of salvation with the Jews. It was his disciples who spread the faith to the Gentiles. Christianity is the completion of Judaism under a new covenant that opens the door for salvation for all.

          • Sargon Surit

            Jesus was not a Jew. He was a Galilean. Christianity is not Judaism plus Christ. Judaism denies Christ.
            Whenever the word ‘jew’ is found in the NT it is best translated as Judean, it was a geographical reference. Judeans were many different races, besides Hebrews.

          • BigDaddyDK

            Jesus was absolutely a Jew, both in heritage and observance. His mother was a direct descendant of King David and Abraham, making Him a Jew through matriarchal lineage and of the lineage of the Tribe of Judah, from which the term Jew originates. This alone establishes his ethnic Jewish heritage. His aunt and uncle (Zechariah and Elizabeth, parents of John the Baptist) were both observant of the Hebrew law. Jesus was also circumcised at 8 days in keeping with the Hebrew law. In the Roman Empire, it was rare for anyone except for Jews and Jewish converts to Christianity to be circumcised in the region after the time of Alexander the Great. It was rare enough outside of Jewish circles to be considered sufficient as evidence of one’s Jewish status in Roman courts. Jesus regularly went to the synagogue, and taught in the Temple as well, which would be unheard of for non-Jews. He was referred to as a rabbi, again a Jewish reference. He declared that He came to fulfill the law, not overturn it. That would have only mattered if He was Jewish. Finally, Jesus referred to Himself as a Jew in John 4:22. Sorry, but the evidence in scripture to support His status as a Jew far exceeds any evidence to the contrary.

          • Don Holthaus

            Jesus may not have mentioned homosexuality but Paul certainly did.

          • truthman1959

            Neither did Jesus recant any Jewish teaching on homosexuality, sodomites,etc. The act is abhorrent to God . The physical and mental consequences of it’s practice are evident to all who dare look.

          • Anonymous

            You can’t pick and choose what you want from the Bible and say I believe this and not that. You believe it all or nothing. Jesus is from the tribe of Israel and believed in the Old Testaments.

          • Greg Williams

            One thing you miss is that Old Testament law was given to Israel, not the world.  Jesus said he came to FULLFILL the law.  Sin is still sin, but the penalty has been paid by Christ.  For you to receive the absolution of your sin, you have to accept Christ as your savior.  Christianity hates the sin, not the sinner.  Islam hates everyone that isn’t Islam.  Christianity does not claim that non-Christians should be killed if they don’t convert to Christianity.  It teaches you should love the sinner and pray for them that they may see the Light of the World.

          • Sargon Surit

            Actually most Christians teach that non-Christians should and will be killed when Christ returns to Jerusalem. That creepy apocalyptic brand of fundamentalist Christianity views Jews as cattle to be rounded up in Israel for conversion (or destruction, for the non-compliant) to force Jesus to return.
            “In the whole land,” declares the LORD, “two-thirds will be struck down and perish; yet one-third will be left in it.” -Zechariah 13:8

          • fez

            It is also what today’s muslims in the heavily islamic countries do today. A man should be the head of the family, but not the dictator. Most people don’t understand how a good Christian marriage is supposed to work because our society today has been skewed to believe other things about total equality. It really doesn’t work when two people are wrangling for leadership or if the man is not a good leader in his family.

          • Paul Robinson

            Not as far apart . . . no just polar opposites.  There is NO subjugation of women in the christian church. They are equal but distinct. Being distinct is not the same as having less worth. Just another false accusation made up with no evidence for support. The Bible clearly says that a man is to love his wife as his own body – hey, you can’t get much more loving than that!

          • Jesse Murphy

            wrong. the bible says let he who has not sinned cast the first stone. meaning? Christianity is not a religion…it is a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. The bible does not teach to hate!! Religion is mans attempt to reach God and Christianity is Gods attempt to reach man!!!

          • Greg Williams

            Obviously you don’t understand the Bible, nor do you have any clue of the basis of Islam or Christianity.  They don’t share a common origin.  Christianity and Islam have nothing in common.  One’s bloodline does not reflect one’s religion.

          • Nanette

   need to read the Bible a little more. The Bible teaches a women to be submissive is the word..a lot different than subjective wouldn’t you say? One is of free will the other as a servant..that is not the Biblical teaching at all..because a husband is to treat and honor his wife as Christ does His church! Stoning need to read the Old Testament a little deeper and then go to the New Testament and read Christ convenient to twist the words of the Bible. Awww ignorance is bliss!

        • Laurie Bugoa

          sorry Pam but you are wrong, and have a lot of hate in your sole. There are a lot of fanatics in most faith or religions (whatever you want to call it ). What causes discord between these is hate, not liking someone simply because of what they believe.  

          • Paul Robinson

             How do you figure that? Its not hate to be rational. Islam is a not only a religion, but a political code under the guise of religion. It requires world wide domination and execution of anyone who refused to submit to their government.

            Just how does actually knowing something about Islam make one hateful? The apostate Muslims who are often trotted out as example of “peace loving” Muslims are themselves hated by Islam, and are right at the top of their kill on sight demands of true Islam. Apostasy to a Muslim is equal to being a Jew.

            If you refuse to see reality, that hardly makes anyone else hateful.

        • Michael Zimmerman

          As a Christian, I must correct you. Muslims come by as many creeds as Christians do. Many ARE peaceful; it would be as unfair to judge all Muslims by the actions of the terrorist-breeding Middle Eastern cults as it would be to judge all Christians by the Westboro Baptist Church. The message of Christianity is NOT that we are all suddenly made perfect once we are baptized, but to recognize our own sinfulness and our need for a redeemer.

          Most of Muhammad’s teachings were a major step up for his time and place. I don’t support that all he did or taught, nor do I think he was a prophet, but he was still a child of God and I think God used him to accomplish whatever good He was able to. Islam has been a force for great evil (as has Christianity; again, WBC) but it has also been a force for great good; my faith in Jesus Christ has not been shaken by this fact.

          Muslims are beloved children of God just like you and I, and are sinners in need of redemption just like you and I, and Jesus died for the sake of their redemption just as he did for yours and mine. To say “There’s no such thing as a good Muslim” is to say “There’s no such thing as a good person” — “There is no one righteous; no, not even one” (Romans 3:10). So long as they work good in the world, though — as many do — then why should YOU be bothered by their creeds? Why not rejoice in the fact that God is able to carry out His will in the world even by those who do not know Him by name?

        • Anonymous

           You obviously don’t know any Muslims.  There are, indeed, very many good ethical Muslims in the world who do not subscribe to the violent tenets that are splashed across the headlines we read about.  The problem is that each Imam and individual Muslim is free to interpret the Koran as he/she sees fit, and it’s the radical extremist whack-jobs that wield the most power throughout the Middle East.

        • Anonymous

           ‘Muslims can not really be classified as religious’ – Isn’t Islam a religion?

        • Anonymous

          Have you read the Bible PAM! Smite them all sounds Hitlerish to me.

      • Todd Clemmer

        Islam is the youngest monotheistic religion on the planet created as a countermeasure to Christianity. Before 600 AD all Persians/Arabs were worshiping the moon god.  The founding fathers hadn’t even herd of islam. If they had, they would had designed our constitution to specifically reject it seeing that is incompatible with this republic.

        • Shawn Walsh

          you do know that jefferson owned a Quran that he used in an attempt to understand the religion ? he did this because of our constant interaction with muslim pirates off the northern coast of africa that had been interfering with our trade goods. he thought understanding their religious motives would help in the negotiations/extortions. 

        • Anonymous

          Of course many of our founding fathers had heard of Islam or Mahamadanism (or maybe spelled with a t–they had different ways of spelling back then.) We had a treaty of Tripoli to help keep our people from the Muslem pirates who would capture ships and sell the people into slavery. 

        • BigDaddyDK

          “Islam is the youngest monotheistic religion on the planet created as a
          countermeasure to Christianity. Before 600 AD all Persians/Arabs
          were worshiping the moon god.  The founding fathers hadn’t even herd of
          islam. If they had, they would had designed our constitution to
          specifically reject it seeing that is incompatible with this republic.”

          Where to begin? Good heavens. There are so many errors one doesn’t even know what to address first. OK, I’ll just go in order.

          “Islam is the youngest monotheistic religion on the planet created as a
          countermeasure to Christianity.” Islam is not the youngest monotheistic religion on the planet. Not by a long shot. Sikhism is a monotheistic religion established in the 1400s and currently has about 30 million adherents worldwide, making it the 5th largest religion. I’d disagree that it was a countermeasure to Christianity as well. If anything, it may have been a reaction to Judaism which was more widely practiced among Arab tribes, but Mohammed had engaged in war against Christians and also had diplomatic and friendly relations with others.

          “The founding fathers hadn’t even herd of
          islam. If they had, they would had designed our constitution to
          specifically reject it seeing that is incompatible with this republic.” Jefferson owned a Qur’an, and as they all had ancestry in Britain there is little doubt that they were quite familiar with Islam. The Ottoman Turks had pushed their empire as far into Europe as Vienna’s walls. Consider that the monarchy in Britain, starting with George I, was German. Chances are very good that the German states being next door to Austria, and the fact that the Holy Roman Empire, to which the German states belonged, had fought against the Turks on multiple occasions. The Arab armies in the 700s advanced into Spain and France as well where they were turned back by Charles Martel, a French leader. Dating back to William I, England had kings that were more French than English, even to the point of ruling England from Normandy rather than London. Those guys knew about Islam too.

          Britain established diplomatic relations with the Ottoman Empire in 1579, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, and by 1583 Britain had its first resident ambassador in Istanbul.

          Leading up to the Barbary Wars, the United States knew of the existence of pirates in the Mediterranean that were from the North African states of Tripoli and Algiers. American/revolutionary colonial ships had been under French protection by treaty, but by 1784 the first American ship was seized by Barbary pirates. That’s nearly 5 years before the Constitution took effect and three years before the Constitution was adopted. There was plenty of time to forbid it, but interestingly the Founding Fathers did not establish a national religion and in 1791 had ratified the Bill of Rights which, among other things, guaranteed freedom of religion. It is the separation of church and state that prevents the U.S. from being run under sharia law as much as it prevents it from being run by adherents to the philosophies of the Westboro Baptist Church.

          This is not to debate the virtues of Islam. I’m no fan of it. However, it is helpful to be armed with facts when contributing to these kinds of discussions.

          • Anonymous

            I t is refreshing to see facts about our history and founding father outside of what was taught in school. Also, the world was/is a vibrant place with good people. I am not a fan of most religions. They all have good and bad points. Most of which is that if you aren’t in their “club” you are wrong or evil. It has been the cause of most wars and strife in this world.

      • David D Kirk

        He was refering to the fact that if Muslims became “Evangelical” Christians… In other words the Christians who sing and dance and are for the most part non denominational would the world be a better place…. Penn answered honestly…. YES.  Why because the fighting would almost dissappear, … Coincidently if the whole world became Muslim the fighting would continue because they fight the infidel… and Shiites and Sunni fight each other all the time.. Christians and Jews do not.

      • Brad Breneman

        I know in some minds the sins of 1000 years ago are equal to the sins of yesterday … but you don’t have Christian countries ( are there any not according to our president) whose whole belief system are non Christians are to be exterminated or converted… you do have muslim countries like that today I don’t know why so many liberals gravitate toward defending the Islamic faith where gays are stoned and tortured women have no rights etc. I guess its the despotic type governments that the find so appealing where the only freedoms are the ones dictated no by a creator or nature but by a overarching government that may as well be a second skin to the population ….

        • Paul Robinson

           They share a common enemy: Christianity. The enemy of my enemy is my friend . . .

      • Paul Robinson

        You were very selective about your quotes. Other founders stated that their goal was to share the glorious gospel of Jesus with the world:

        On October 20, 1779, the Continental Congress issued a proclamation to the entire nation:

        Whereas it becomes us humbly to approach the throne of Almighty God,
        with gratitude and praise for the wonders which his goodness has
        wrought…above all, that he hath diffused the glorious light of the gospel,whereby, through the merits of our gracious Redeemer, we may become the heirs of his eternal glory:
        therefore, Resolved, That it be recommended to the several states, to
        appoint Thursday, the 9th of December next, to be a day of public and
        solemn thanksgiving to Almighty God for his mercies, and of prayer for
        the continuance of his favor and protection to these United States (Journals of…, 15:1191-1193).””Elias Boudinot, president of the Continental Congress (1782-1783),
        expressed his “anxious desire” that “our country should be preserved
        from the dreadful evil of becoming enemies to the religion of the
        Gospel, which I have no doubt, but would be introductive of the dissolution of government and the bonds of civil society” (1801, p. xxii).””It is no exaggeration to say that on Sundays in Washington during the administrations of
        Thomas Jefferson (1801-1809) and of James Madison (1809-1817) the state became the
        church. Within a year of his inauguration, Jefferson began attending church services in the
        House of Representatives. Madison followed Jefferson’s example . . .  Worship
        services in the House–a practice that continued until after the Civil War–were acceptable to
        Jefferson because they were nondiscriminatory and voluntary. Preachers of every Protestant
        denomination appeared. (Catholic priests began officiating in 1826.) As early as January
        1806 a female evangelist, Dorothy Ripley, delivered a camp meeting-style exhortation in the
        House to Jefferson, Vice President Aaron Burr, and a “crowded audience.” Throughout his
        administration Jefferson permitted church services in executive branch buildings. The Gospel
        was also preached in the Supreme Court chambers.
        Jefferson’s actions may seem surprising because his attitude toward the relation
        between religion and government is usually thought to have been embodied in his
        recommendation that there exist “a wall of separation between church and state.” In that
        statement, Jefferson was apparently declaring his opposition, as Madison had done in
        introducing the Bill of Rights, to a “national” religion. In attending church services on public
        property, Jefferson and Madison consciously and deliberately were offering symbolic support
        to religion as a prop for republican government.”
        Boudinot, Elias (1801), The Age of Revelation (Philadelphia, PA: Asbury Dickins),

        Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789 (1904-1937),
        ed. Worthington C. Ford, et al. (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing
        Office), Library of Congress,

    • Anonymous

      He seems creepy with his forin accent and everything. He holds secrets

      • Hugh Jorgan

        Nice of you to judge him. I’m sure you don’t have an accent, right? Stop acting like a Liberal. 

    • Amitie Kassis

      til I looked at the bank draft for $4275, I accept that…my… brother was actualie erning money part time on their apple labtop.. there neighbour started doing this less than seventeen months and just now paid the dept on there condo and bourt Maserati. this is where I went, ………… ZOO80.ℂom

    • ThorsteinVeblen2012

      Would the world be a better place if all Jews became Christian

      or Muslim?

      If everybody agreed on everything would the world better place.

      Rabbi Lapin’s pandering question is absurd.

      If the Muslims would be better as Christians why not Jews? Why doesn’t he become a Christian?

    • b d

       that question was utter nonsense. he’s making the thinly veiled assumption/accusation that muslims make the world less “better”. what an extremely prejudiced thing to infer.

      • Pamela Peltonen

        It’s true

  • Rhett Wooden

    You mentioned mathematics and God.  Have you ever analyzed Einstein and E=mc2 ?  Divide both sides by c2 and you get e/c2 = m.  All mass is a function of energy/c2.  Everything . . . me and you, the earth, the universe is energy . . .  Math proves the existence of God.

    • Anonymous

      What does your basic algebra problem have to do with god?

      • Sam Fisher

        Atheist like yourself will never get it no matter how many times it is explained to you. You can’t even comprehend a simple question.

        • Anonymous

          Lol. How about trying to explain it just once?

          And I’m not an atheist. Not at all.

          • Sam Fisher

            No you just attack everything that has to do with other people’s faith. No one believes your bull so stop.

          • Anonymous

            Stop asking questions?

          • Sam Fisher

            Stop acting like a ass would help.

  • Rhett Wooden

    Glenn, you mentioned mathematics and God.  How God operates through mathematics in a logical manner.  Have you ever analyzed Einsteins e=mc2 ?  Simple math procedure, divide both sides by c2.  The result is m = e/c2.  All mass is energy as a function of the speed of light.  You, me, earth, the universe is energy.  Take a closer look.

  • Anonymous

    “Would the world be a better or worse place if a billion Mulsims became evangelical Christians tomorrow?”

    “All other things being equal? Then I think yes,” Penn said.”

    How stupid.
    It wasn’t a yes or no question.

    • Sam Fisher

      Yes it was knownothing you are just that stupid not to even comprehend a question. Keep proving to us that you are a moron.

      • Anonymous


        “Would the world be a better or worse place if a billion Mulsims became evangelical Christians tomorrow?”

        That’s a yes or no question? Lol. Hilarious. If you answer yes, what does that mean? Too funny.

        • Sam Fisher

          You are a simpleton.

          • Anonymous

            what a complex observation.

          • Sam Fisher

            Not really actions speak louder than words and clearly you hate his followers.

  • Anonymous

    If you’re only moral because you’re afraid of god’s wrath, then you’re not really moral, you’re just a coward.

    • Sam Fisher

      You really have no clue what Christianity is do you? Once again knownothing shows he does not know what he is even talking about.

      • Anonymous

        Yes, I do. I also know what fundamentalism is. My statement stands, and if you have anything to say about it, go for it. Or keep whining and making irrelevant and gpfaalse personal accusations. That’s real Christian of you.

        If you’re only moral because you’re afraid of god’s wrath, then you’re not really moral, you’re a coward.

        • Anonymous

          Character is what you do when you think that nobody is watching.  The Greek word “agape” is translated as love.  Agape is also a modern term for a jaw-dropping reverence for something, an unconditional dedication.  A real Christian does good works out of gratitude for everything the Lord provides.  That is the overall message of the Bible on how to act in your everyday life.  Do good not for reward, but because it comes naturally to you.  The Bible said that those who did not know God’s name yet made decisions that pleased him (out of love) had the law written on their hearts.  Atheists can do a world of good, but only an honest one will admit to the benevolence of Christians around the world.  

    • Joy Rose

      If you are only ‘moral’ because it happens to be what you feel like doing, there is no virtue.

      • Anonymous

        Agreed. That would be hedonism!

    • Anonymous

      Fear of the Lord is the beginning of Wisdom :) That is scriptural. 

      • Justin Tierney

        Why what is he going to do…kill me
        Im not afraid of death either

    • Jesse Chappell

       Under that logic, If you don’t murder because your afraid to go to prison, then your really just a coward?

  • Anonymous

    Too bad most of you think the Rabbi is going to hell.

    • Sam Fisher

      Ladies and gentleman liberal tolerance. 

      • Anonymous

        You’re an idiot. I don’t think he’s going to hell. Right wing cons do. Duh.

        • Anonymous

          Before claiming someone to be an “IDIOT” find out first, what you are talking about, in other words, obtain the facts.

          “It is appointed for all men, once to die”. One doesn’t have to be religious in any sense of the word to see that this statement stemming from the confines of the bible is true…history alone is our best guide – still not convinced, take a look around at the graveyards scattered across our nation  alone. Something else to consider, the oldest living human alive today is a little over one hundred.

          So then, where do we go when death comes a knocking? We go to hell….yes you read that right, we all go to a place in the ground which houses our remains until a future resurrection. Rather if you believe in the resurrection or not, has nothing to do with the point I’m stressing.

          HELL is nothing more than a hole in the ground…a holding place that’s all – nothing more. The English translators of the original biblical text used this one word HELL to replace three other words or meanings – it was a major mistake and it alone, has done more damage in duping this world into religious ignorance more than almost any other subject.

          Learn the facts or look the idiot, its your choice.

          • Anonymous

            Well, Sam and I have a history, but in any case, looks like you agree with me. The idea of hell as punishment for disobedience is puerile.

          • Anonymous

            I indeed do agree with you, on the other hand, the bible does speak of a lake of fire where the uncorrectable will perish forever. This is an eternal punishment, in that, the punishment last for all eternity, but as far as a persons soul suffering forever in some hell fire punishment, and for something “evil” expressed in this temporary lifetime, is not found in all the bible.

    • Pamela Peltonen

      I do not think the Rabbi is going to hell. I like your name Knowitsome. You even admit that you don’t know it all.

      • Anonymous

        Humility is important, I find. Keeps a mind open; keeps one learning.
        I don’t believe in Hell, so I don’t think he’s going there, either. 

  • Sam Fisher

    Glenn I have to disagree with you we do have proof that God is real. He speaks to his people his flock and anyone that follows God can hear him. I believe you have to have more faith to be an atheist than you do a Christian.

    • Anonymous

      Hearing voices isn’t proof of anything.

      • Sam Fisher

        I thought you said you were not an atheist. Notice how he attacks believers at the same time he wants us to believe he believes in a god.

        • Anonymous

           you can agree with a conclusion without agreeing with the reasoning.

          • Sam Fisher

            True but this guy has been a big jerk lately and is most likely trying to get under my skin.

          • Anonymous

            don’t take it personally

        • Anonymous

          Didn’t attack anyone, just doubting the idea that any voice that some religious person hears is proof of anything.

          Anyway, if you need proof, you’re not really a believer.

          • Anonymous

            “Anyway, if you need proof, you’re not really a believer”, is a false statement and one that shows your prejudice. A faith that is built on pure conjecture is one that be more rightly described as mere credulity or superstition. the Christian faith is one that unashamedly demands and provides “EVIDENCE”. The book of faith [the bible] of Christians asserts this over and over. 
            Mere credulity is something you should understand. Being a materialist yourself.

          • Anonymous

            I am quite far from being a materialist. That accusation offends me!
            Faith is belief without proof. If you need proof, you have no faith.

          • Sam Fisher

            True but I can tell that you don’t have the spirit just in the way you attack other peoples belief systems without know proof if that is what they believe. I know a few atheist that do that but never once talked to a believer and got the same B.S. Come on man be honest with yourself you think God approve of you attacking Glenn with false claims just so you can make him look bad?

          • Anonymous

            Again, you make a good argument. But again, I must add something to your perspective. The bible tells us to “prove all things” – this proof is the recipe for ones belief, in other words, it leads us into a more sound foundation of understanding the existence of an unseen God. Bible prophecy is how that proving takes place.

            It works like this…thousands of years ago God inspired writings for this day and age. Writings of world events that would most certainly take place in our time. When we study the word of God (the bible) and watch these specific events take place daily revealing themselves in the pages of the press, or over the airwaves – including hyperspace, then we are proving the existence of God and proving to ourselves how real he is and how insignificant we actually are. He lasts forever….we on the other hand, are only temporary beings having a potential of entering into his world, but only after bearing his same spiritual likeness – humans cannot live where he lives, we must first be born of God. 

          • Anonymous

            In a deep spiritual way I mostly agree, but there are many traps to look out for. (I don’t think we’re insignificant, nor temporary.)
            The bottom line is that it’s wonderful to use scripture in that way, but that doesn’t for a moment mean that it’s proper to impose any interpretation on anyone else. That is personal work, and it’s fascism to think that your conclusions apply to anyone else. 
            The Bible can be used as a metaphor to learn lessons about how to live today, just like the I-Ching, Tarot, or many other divination tools can. But if anyone thinks that their message is the only one, that’s unacceptable oppression.

          • Anonymous

            In a deep philosophical way I mostly agree with you. The traps to be leery-of are what God is clearly warning of, when he states “the whole world is deceived” – that begs the question, why would the bible be written in the first place if it couldn’t be understood, or if it is left open for ones own interpretation. Talk about anarchy and confusion – there lies the problem with today’s multi-religious-sysyem almost each denomination claims they have it right when in fact there is but one God who will have knowledge proclaimed no other way than his. One truth – one way. It is that simple, the hard part is believing God when he imparts his wisdom toward us humans, whom have, a long lasting record of stubbornness.

            Humans are only significant if and only if, they fulfill the requirements given to them by God and they gain themselves eternal life, by obedience. Otherwise they are like dust in the wind – here one moment – gone the next. Again – the temporary physical human flesh dies and withers – it is really not life….what humanity should strive for is spiritual bodies that impart eternal life – a form of life that is exactly opposite from human flesh and blood.

            It is written – “many are called (not most mind you – many) but few are chosen” The reason only few are chosen is because not many have the diligence to seek out and prove God at his word – the Holy Bible. If done properly, the false teaching of any other – in fact all other religious bodies are soon discovered for their false doctrine and lies

            God tells us himself, that he has only one message for humanity, I hardly doubt that one message is oppressive….ignoring that life saving message leads mankind into oppressiveness and that has been our tragic history ever since we stepped foot on this planet.

      • Pamela Peltonen

        But it’s much more than just a voice, so much more.

    • Anonymous

       to believe in God you pretty much have to suspend logic and judgement in a selective circumstance.
      Its definitely difficult to go from a believer to an atheist, but its difficult to change any belief that a person has been raised with to the extent it essentially becomes part of their identity.  That’s why I think a lot of less than devout or agnostic people don’t call themselves atheists despite how if you really press with specific questions they essentially are.  They were raised with the belief, its a part of their identity and its not something they’re comfortable losing or care enough to really bother thinking about.

      • Sam Fisher

        And then how do you explain me an x atheist that was not raised in no such way. I believe that an atheist is so closed minded that they cannot see what is in front of the face. God could come down today and say he is real and you closed minded people will still think he is not real.

        • Anonymous

           I was speaking in general.  Of course there will be other cases, I think of at least one other atheist off the top of my head who became religious as life went on.  Some of it is fear of death.  Most of it, and I would argue is the genesis of religion, is that we as a species are very uncomfortable with randomness or the unexplained and attempt to explain it (Penn got at this a bit, but a good read is Nassim Taleb’s “Fooled By Randomness”, he doesn’t talk about religion, more stats and the economy and how we don’t acknowledge chance and randomness in our everyday lives).  This is one of the reasons you didn’t see much atheism around until Darwin showed up and people who previously would have been deists can see that we can explain a lot of previously unexplainable stuff without just using “God did it”.

          If God did come down to be and told me he was real, a bit redundant at that point but presumably identifying him or herself would be necessary, your right I probably wouldn’t believe it b/c it would be far more likely that I was hallucinating.  However, the argument for God is not even close to being potentially that convincing.
          God may very well be real, I can’t prove he’s not, its impossible to prove he isn’t real.
          Certainly if he is real the evidence just isn’t there, especially of one god, or a transcendental god that is involved and cares about our little spec of dust hurtling through the vastness of space.

        • Kerry

           Sorry, but I went from believer to atheist.  History and science disprove the bible, except in very few circumstances, none of which are supernatural.  Just the occasional historical town mentioned that actually existed.  I can say with 100% certainty that the christian god does not exist.  Could there be something else that perhaps caused the Big Bang.  I don’t know.  But if there is, I see no evidence of it being a personal god that intervenes in any way shape or form.  The idea that a being of that advancement is interested in what we eat, who we sleep with and in what position, how to dress and wear our hair and various other petty concerns, is utterly ridiculous and undeniably a man made creation.

          • Sam Fisher

            Sorry but to base your faith on science and History alone is stupid. First point you got to realize the Bible written accounts have been spread over at least 10000 years. Many of things could have been lost distorted by atheist or destroyed. In the 1900s they did not believe Troy existed outside of myth but they found that. Just because they did not found something means nothing happen. Gee you atheist want me to believe in things that can’t be proven and would even be rejected by the scientists that founded those ideas today like evolution but attack believers for believing in a god that they can’t see. Most of science is based on things that not only cannot be proven but fall flat on their face when they face something called reality. gee you atheist want me to believe that the universe was started by two membranes universes smashing into each other when you cannot not even prove that they are even out there. You believe that star dust made us but yet the very act of reproduction disproves that because you can’t make more than you have and the process makes cells out of more cells. So in order to have evolution works you need to keep recycle the same stuff over and over again and with so many missing links and downright animals popping out of thin air make evolution laughable. The very nature of the single cell disproves evolution because you would need a billion years more the earth even existed to even get a single cell. You need more faith to be an atheist than you do a Christian.

        • Brian Henderson

          He did 2000 years ago, and the Jews saw him and rejected. Can u imagine seeing a miracle and then rejecting that it happened. And proceeding to crucify the miracle maker….

          • Sam Fisher

            I see a few and they must have been so closed minded to what was in front of them to realize just what was happening.

    • Kerry

       Personal experiences are not evidence to anyone but yourself.  Lots of people believe they have seen Bigfoot.  That doesn’t prove that Bigfoot is real. 

      • Sam Fisher

        Not talking about proving it to the likes of you.

  • Anonymous

    If, in fact, the bible says, (and it does)…”The whole world is deceived” – (Rev 12:9) Then why are we even having discussions of this sort? God, literally, wanted exactly what he inspired to be written in the above verse for a good reason, thus comes the equation – that of – Responsibility!

    Are we not all responsible to prove to ourselves and to our children, what God was talking about when he said ‘the whole world is deceived’?  Wouldn’t that also include groups such as Atheists and all various sects of religion – be it Jewish, Christian, or Muslim? Lets face it – if there is but one God – so says the believer in a “higher being”  – so why all the confusion as to who and what this god is?

  • Anonymous

    Would the world be better if all Muslims became Evangelicals?
    Simple question, but a very complicated answer especially considering there are over a billion muslims all with differing arrays and beliefs in the tenants of Islam and how they should be applied.  Many countries would benefit from this, Saudi Arabia being the most obvious.  While certain things that Penn and other atheist libertarians would consider obtrusive/tyrannical would still exist things would likely be better for women, or at least religion would no longer be as convenient an excuse.  Other more secular countries, Turkey to name one, would probably regress, in my and likely Penn’s opinion, in certain areas of freedom, as there is no secular version of Evangelism.  However, if the only thing that changes is their religion than very little to almost nothing would be impacted.  The violent terrorists who want us dead would still want us dead, they would want us dead if they worshiped a monkey hurling poop at a turtle.
    If the presumption of the question is that Islam never existed and instead the middle east developed through time as evangelicals then we enter the realm as to how much of an impact regional culture has on religions, which I would argue is a lot.  The practice of Islam in most areas has been largely impacted by the local cultures.  Iran has a long cultural history, going back to pre-Islamic days of sex being a huge part of the culture.  In the modern Islamic republic not much has changed.  One hour marriages are available with the essential purpose being to ok a hook up.  If Iran were instead the Evangelical Republic of Iran (or Christistan) it would be difficult to imagine it would be any different.
    So a short answer would be in some areas yes, in others no.  But on the aggregate I’d say its most likely there would be little to no difference made.
    If held to a one word answer: No.

    • Anonymous

      Islam is based on one single solitary lie and you either believe it or you don’t:  Muslims believe that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were Muslims and held Islamic views.  This is a hijacking of Judeo-Christianity and a complete slap in the face of the Jews and Christians.  The Koran is full of condescension for Jews and Christians and pagans and homosexuals and women…
      Where do you see most of the violence in the world today?  Even if you cast aside the nations of Iraq and Afghanistan in recent years, take a look at places where US troops have NOT put boots on the ground.  Syria, Muslims killing each other.  Yemen, Muslim extremists fighting for power and control.  Mali, Muslims fighting an ethnic conflict and French troops for sovereignty and Sharia imposition.  Sudan, Muslim extremists for decades using child soldiers to round up and persecute Christians.  Muslims routinely harass Christians in Nigeria and Egypt.  It’s illegal to renounce Islam in Iran (held Americans hostage for 444 days once).  Muslims and Maronite Christians have killed each other for centuries in Lebanon.  Kashmir region between India and Pakistan, one side is Muslim.  Palestinians, a fabricated ethnic group dedicated to the disenfranchisement of the State of Israel, hurls rockets in the direction of innocent Jews on a regular basis.  It seems to me that every major conflict in the world today is some group of Muslims fighting somebody.  The Inquisition isn’t happening anymore.  The Crusades are long gone.  Christians learned humility over the years.  But people get mad when they drive by a Nativity in America now.  They say it offends them.  Fine, be offended I say.  But don’t claim that you’ve been imposed upon by a Christian.  There is no law saying that you have to be one…and that’s a different kind of world.

      • Anonymous

        I’ll take that one further, they believe Jesus and Moses were essentially muslim prophets, though not fully muslim b/c Islam didn’t exist until Muhammad, and that over time people screwed up the message. Which is why God kept sending more prophets with Muhammad being the last one. One of the reasons no matter what country Islam is practiced in they still use Arabic, b/c that was the language God chose to use and changing language could end up having things lost in translation. Hardly a slap in the face to hold different beliefs about similar people, let alone to claim to be a part, the purest part, of that same tradition. Certainly they are not unique, as any religious person has to believe all other religions are based on lies.

        Syria: violence has nothing to do with religion. Yemen: would probably be doing that no matter what their religion, history shows regardless of religion people will be violent, even the most non-violent religions, buddhism, have large histories of violence. Mali: fighting for sovereignty, what their religion is is irrelevant. Sudan: change in religion probably doesn’t effect the situation.
        Iran: addressed in my earlier response. Lebanon: violence between the two groups is fairly modern, Lebanon used to be an ideal community of coexistence. Kashmir: the fact that Pakistan is muslim has little to do with the fight, territorial and nationalist in nature. Largely the fault of the UK.
        Palestine: I would argue, and I have no interest in opening this can of worms with someone who clearly has a very slanted view of the issue, has little to do with differing religion (for example if they worshiped turtles they would still hate israel for the same reasons they do now and probably find away to use religion to justify their actions or unite people behind their cause), territorial in nature.

        You would be wrong. Mexico- no muslims. South America- lots of violence there no muslims. Congo: don’t know about current violence, but a strong history: almost entirely christian. Rwanda: the famous genocides, only 4% muslim- most of that conversions post genocide. Almost everyone else christian.
        Not in recent years, but in the last few decades Ireland has experienced tons of violence, no muslim involvement.
        You’re right about a lot of the violence, but your assumption that Islam is a key factor in that is erroneous and presumes a certain simplicity in the nature of the conflicts.
        A lot of the violent areas, muslim and non-muslim, have a certain amount of recent imperialism or being a part of the cold war battlefield in common.
        There are 1.2 billion muslims, a lot of examples of muslims in violent conflict for various reasons can be found. There are about 2.2 billion christians, lots of examples of violence especially in africa. Doesn’t mean being christian makes you violent and the world would be better if everyone was a buddhist. A lot of other factors come together to create these conflicts.
        I conceded in my original answer, that in some cases improvements would be made, but on the whole the changes would be negligible.

  • Anonymous

    Science cannot disprove God. Science is the study of the natural world. You cannot disprove God by studying His creation.

    • Anonymous

       its impossible to disprove God, and no atheist in their right mind would make such a claim.
      all you can say is that there isn’t enough evidence to prove God.

      • Anonymous

        You can say more than that. You can say that science does not provide the kind of evidence that could either prove or disprove God. 

  • Anonymous

    Why did Glennbeck say that Disney is evil? Is that something we should know about?

  • Hugh Jorgan

    Glenn’s reaction to this was seriously HILARIOUS!!!! He’s so funny. 
    But a great question. 

  • Anonymous

    That’s not a debate. That’s a stupid, offensive question.

  • Anonymous

    Luke 6:35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward 
    shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.
    36 Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.

  • Anonymous

    In all sincerity…And please do not be offended…And I apologize if you take this wrong…because I mean no harm…If you believe in Love….You believe in God. All of this debating does not matter. For the Truth is that the Bible says God is Love. Period. Nothing more…nothing less. That is the TRUE lesson of the Bible. To love one another as he has loved us. And if a man truly loves…he loves All people and all types of people. The unloveable…the misunderstood…those held captive in thought or deeds. He is kind to the evil and the wicked,  God tells us to love our enemies and overcome evil with good. We are not to fight or debate them. We are not to pick and choose whom we love. We are to love all people. This is not the gospel sold from the “church” but it is the true gospel of God. That is the God I serve and I would be happy to discuss it with you anytime. Not to convert you to my ways but to let you know there is others out there who try and live the way that would please God if he was listening. Jesus even said…he did not come to judge anyone but those who “claimed” to know him. Wickedness judges itself and will take care of itself in due time. I hope this clarifies things a bit. Not everyone thinks the same but hopefully Love can conquer all someday. We overcome evil with good. 

  • Rex Stevenson

    Obama Recognizes Somalian Government: Agrees to Pay Off It’s $602M Debt!
    The so-called insurgents, a.k.a. Islamic terrorists, are still in control of nearly half the country and Somali pirates are still raiding along the African coast. These people are our enemy! Remember “Black Hawk Down?” Remember the Christian minister and his wife who were brutally murdered last year when pirates captured their sailboat and then shot them dead within sight of a Navy patrol boat? And now Obama wants to financially support yet another Islamic terrorist regime. Incredible!Why is the Obama administration supporting Somalia? Why has Obama agreed to pay off Somalia’s $602M debt? The answer is simple.It’s in direct retaliation for Kenya’s presidential election last month. Obama warned there would be “consequences” for not electing his cousin Raila Odinga, and now he’s going to support Somalia, Kenya’s Muslim neighbor. Remember, the Kenyan people elected Uhuru Kenyatta, the son of Kenya’s first president, Jomo Kenyatta, the man who fired and destroyed the political career of Obama’s father when he conspired with Odinga’s father to overthrow the Kenyan government in 1968 and replace it with a Socialist state.And if you don’t believe it, look it up for yourselves. Obama is a traitor who supports Islamic terrorism in Egypt, Yemen, Tunisia, Libya, Syria, and now Somalia.

    Full story follows:

    Obama’s Impeachable Kenyan


    be precise, and according to a special 2008 ABC News Radio report, in 2006 then
    Senator Barack Obama violated U.S. Federal Law (the Logan Act, which
    specifically forbids interference in foreign elections and government
    policy-making by American politicians), by actively campaigning for his Muslim
    cousin, Raila Odinga. In fact, his blatant interference was such that he was officially
    asked to leave the country by the Kenyan government.


    his interference didn’t stop there. According to the African Press, secret
    emails between Obama and Odinga on “how to rig elections, cry voter fraud
    if losing, and then call for riots in the streets” were also exchanged.
    (Available on YouTube; Washington Times article 10-12-08.)


    in December 2007, when Odinga lost the presidential election, Obama suggested
    to his cousin that the election had been rigged … and then all hell broke
    loose. And during the next two months there was widespread theft, vandalism,
    looting, sexual violence, and numerous atrocities. A subsequent UN report
    stated that Odinga’s Muslim followers burned more than 300 Christian churches,
    displaced over 500,000 people, destroyed 42,000 houses and farms, and
    slaughtered nearly 1,500 Christians, most of whom were innocent women and
    children who they first raped, sodomized, and then beheaded with machetes.


    ran for president again this year, and this time Obama pressured and
    manipulated the U.N. International Criminal Court into falsely accusing his
    opponent, Uhuru Kenyatta, of criminal charges relating to the 2007 tribal
    violence that claimed nearly 2,000 lives – when in fact it was Odinga’s Muslim
    followers who went on a nationwide killing rampage. Obama then instructed U.S.
    State Department Assistant Secretary for African Affairs, Johnnie Carson, to
    issue a pre-election warning that “choices have consequences,” a statement
    widely interpreted as a thinly veiled threat by the Obama administration that
    Kenyan voters should back Odinga against the more popular Kenyatta.


    Kenyan presidential election took place on March 13, 2013, and Raila Odinga
    again lost, this timeby a margin of 51% to 43%, to Christian candidate Uhura
    Kenyatta, the son of Jomo Kenyatta, Kenya’s first president (1964–1978). But
    once again, Odinga claimed “voter fraud” and demanded a recount.


    did Obama intentionally violate the Logan Act (2006-2007 and again in
    2012-2013), illegally fund Odinga’s campaign, and make false allegations
    against Uhuru Kenyatta? Is it because Obama and Odinga are both members of the
    same Muslim Luo tribe, or is there more to it than that? Why was Obama
    seemingly driven to destroy the challenger and elevate his cousin to office?
    Why would Obama risk his political career and impeachment by deliberately violating
    federal law, Kenyan law, and International law?”


    answer will come as a shock to those who support Barack Obama, but not so to
    those of us who recognize him for the cunning, deceitfully clever,
    compassionless, and very dangerous criminal that he has repeatedly proven
    himself to be.


    Obama Sr. is the central figure of his son’s memoir, Dreams from My Father
    (1995), and on pp. 214-216 Obama states that conflict with President Jomo
    Kenyatta destroyed his father’s political career. “After Kenyatta fired my
    father he was blacklisted in Kenya,
    found it impossible to get work, and his life deteriorated into drinking and


    the picture? Barack Obama and Raila Odinga were motivated by the desire to
    destroy the son (Uhuru Kenyatta) of the man (Jumo Kenyatta) who had destroyed
    the political careers of their fathers (Barack Obama Sr. and Jaramogi Odinga) –
    and Obama used and abused his office as President of the United States to influence
    the free democratic election process in a sovereign foreign nation in a vicious
    and vindictive act of family and tribal vengeance.


  • Mark Miller

    Would love to ask Gillette where he gets his criteria for Good on any subject or decision…

    • Anonymous

      same place you do, culture. 

  • Faith Brasseaux

    I’m sorry, but ‘just’ being a good person isn’t good enough. We won’t make it into heaven just by being good. Accepting Jesus as Lord and Savior is key. John 3:16 

    • Anonymous

      This was not true until the 16th century. “The Reformation was born of Luther’s dual declaration – first, the discovering of Jesus and salvation by faith alone; and second, identifying the Papacy as the Antichrist.” —

  • Chris Carden

    Three Very Smart Men that DONT get it, all are missing the mark here.  NO ONE is Good, we ALL have Sinned and come short of Gods Glory.  Thats why we NEED a Savior.  Jesus said Go and Tell, Not to live your lie and hope someone notices your “good” example.  Penn denies God totally, the Rabbi Denies Jesus and Glen Beck speaks of another Jesus.  Tragically, These men may be to smart to get save.  They lack the child like faith that Jesus spoke about, come to me!

  • Terry Mcintyre

    Re: “Measuring stick” — those of us who have read Austrian School economics know that a great deal of economic behavior can be deduced from very simple axioms – we don’t have to “look it up in the Bible”, or even in “Human Action”, because the truths of economics are deductive, in the manner that a few axioms allow us to deduce many mathematical truths. 

    It does not take a rocket scientist, nor a sacred book, to conclude that if everybody is either murdering each other, an/dor spending lots of time defending themselves from murder, much less time will be spent producing and consuming food, reproducing, raising one’s progeny, etc. Any society which does not discover some basic moral rules will be self-limiting. These rules are inherent in the nature of people, or even of animals or sentient alien beings which are “close enough” in the sense used in Human Action. They’ll discover similar rules. 

    Which brings me to the scary thing about religion. All religions and societies tend to develop some form of the Golden Rule, but they’re not always scrupulous about applying that rule to “others.” Sometimes, people use religion to define “people to whom the Golden Rule applies” and “people who are less than people, because they are Not Like Us, and to whom basic rules of human decency do not apply.” 

  • Anonymous

    I believe I have a responsibility to be MY better self and to lead by MY example. I have a real problem with people who talk the Christian talk, put stickers and fish on their cars to advertise that they are Christians, but don’t take responsibility to ACT like it. The obvious hypocrisy is a turn-off to those teetering on the edge of belief or non-belief, for sure. Don’t SAY you’re a Christian – BE a Christian – and if you really are, you’ll never have to tell anyone that you are – they will know it by your actions.

  • Anonymous

    “What unifies is certainly not our theologies but it certainly is our ethic,” — this is true. they share the ethic that man is above nature, that the world is ours to exploit, and that man’s ideas about how to live, whether they are written down in theology or produced by reason, should guide us even as we destroy the natural world around us. 

  • Brian Henderson

    Im sorry Glenn it is not “Alrite” for what Penn does. A true Christian would not allocate his beliefs as being ok. why would u find the fact that someone that is unsaved and heading down a road of lies to the gates of hell, ok. The open armed acceptance of things like this by Christians is what is destroying the church from the inside out.

  • Jesse Evans

    Penn said: “The argument is made by me that the celebration of faith, the
    glorification of faith, and faith being defined as The Bible does as
    belief without proof is not something that I feel is good to celebrate.”
    The problem with that statement is that it is factually untrue. The Bible states that the world declares the glory of God. And the Apostles evangelized the known world as eye witnesses to their events before a hostile Jewess elect. Paul said “I know in whom I believe”. Nowhere is there the advocacy of blind faith. The problem today is that Christians aren’t really taught that.

  • Freddy Di Guglielmo

    he said a BILLION..  not ALL!!!  That alone could create a big issue.  PROOFREADING??EDITING!!! 

  • Jane Dorr Goodwin

    And if morality exsits outside of God, from where does it come. Is Penn saying humans evolved into having a conscience?  Why didn’t man evolve into being all ‘good’ with no ‘evil'; or ‘evil’ with no ‘good’? It’s difficult for me to buy that the potential for morality was grabbed from thin air, or crawled from the muck, and then evolved. Really??

    • Anonymous

      “It’s difficult for me to buy that the potential for morality was grabbed from thin air” — of course this is not the prevailing wisdom. for me, at least, the idea that human beings are not divinely guided is a huge relief. Makes the world a much saner place. 

  • Paul Robinson

    Penn’s “innate goodness” concept is the result of being raised in a Christian culture. There is NO genetic goodness in mankind – Hitler was following his moral guide, a subjective corrupt world view, developed by his belief in evolution and Darwinism. Without an OBJECTIVE standard, who’s to say Attila the Hun wasn’t moral?  Without an objective standard, self-actualization and situational ethics – both major underlying concepts in education – become guiding principles. Only the remnant spark of our creator makes man anything but another “survival of the fittest” animal.

    • Anonymous

      so there was no moral goodness in all of human history until 2000 years ago? and of course since then, after christianity, we’ve had slavery, several genocides, ongoing ecocide… apparently all caused by darwin?

  • Anonymous

    It is discussions like this that need to happen more frequently in the public arena as well as our living rooms and other personal contacts with people of varying view points. The shame is that so many people are closed minded and won’t even participate. Most liberals wouldn’t even believe this took place on a show like Glenn Beck’s. Very sad indeed!

  • Anonymous

    There are genuinely good people not believing in God or theology.  The difference between them and  believers in the decision making process is:  believer’s apply theology to their decisions and non-believers do not.  In other words, a non-believer believes he does not  believe and does not apply theology to decision making.  I could get really funny and say, the non-believer because of his non-belief does not know he is applying theology to decisions.

  • Rosa Brand

    I think there are a few people missing the point. The corollary
    between these three men coming together are two things, 1) their character and
    2) their humanity.

    You can argue the minutia or semantics, but what matters is
    character and what connects us is our humanity. It doesn’t matter what religion
    or belief you espouse, so long as you are honest, wise, rational, objective,
    kind, hardworking, etc. All the things that build character are worthy pursuits.
    And the more you focus on the failings of other people, the less time you have
    to introspect and grow.

    When a person is engaged in their own development and growth,
    everyone benefits. That is the lesson to take from this segment. The rest is

    • Anonymous

      the problem of course is when you have several different religions that all claim to be the one true divinely inspired word of god, and they all insist that every other religion is wrong. this leads the believers to think that they have a moral obligation to convert the others to their religion “for their own good” 

  • Randall Bond

    Faith in God , is not the same as Faith in Religion. When you are discussing the topics at hand  ,the lines between them start to blur. Good people that have Faith will see God in the after life,
    a person that is good is just good a person that has Faith can still be a bad person. If we would remember that the Bible and most books on theology were written by MAN not God as some believe and that even though there might have been a ” Divine Insperation ” in the compiling and completion of such a Great book .there is and was an influence from those that were involved in writing and bringing it together. It’s a good guideline to follow but not all of it is right for our time.
    I believe that those in Power ( Government office , and such) KNOW what they are doing and what they would like to be the end result, and I could be wrong but wasn’t Religion used by Governments to control the masses. 
    All I know is Faith in God or a Higher power hasn’t hurt anyone on an individual level so why all the fuss?

  • Matthew Treadway

    God apparently knows everything, that means he knew what was going to happen to you after you died before you were born. Therefore if he knew you were going to go to hell he doomed you by creating you, and if he knew you were going to be in his army why wouldn’t he just finish the equation himself. It all becomes a big redundancy and is the essence of why afterlife-based theology can’t believed by thinkers and scientists. If god did exist, concerning my last statement, he would either have to be unbelievably stupid, or unbelievably wicked, because he knows who is going to fly towers into the world trade center, but creates them anyway and tests you here on earth but already knows the results. On another note, if God damns homosexuality, why would he create them that way, to say that being a homosexual is a choice is just as sane as saying being heterosexual is a choice, in lamens terms, why would you thrust yourself into a marriage or relationship or even sex with someone you aren’t attracted to instead of someone you apparently are attracted to like the opposite sex. You can’t “choose” how your DNA instructs hormones to induce attraction, and even if if it is possible why would you try to stop someone from controlling their own life?

  • Randie Donoff

    If you think Sean`s story is neat,, 2 weeks ago mom in-law got $5135 just sitting there a fourteen hour week an their house and the’re best friend’s mother`s neighbour was doing this for 10-months and broght in more than $5135 in there spare time at there computer. applie the instructions from this web-site…………. Zoo80.ℂom

  • Russell Choudhury

    The world would also be a better place if everyone were white or if everyone were muslim’s etc, the debate is silly ofc everything would be better because a lot of people hate difference… Its why fat kids and people with glasses and nerds get bullied when we are young… it doesnt change when we grow up either… It doesnt mean we should all become bullies

    • Anonymous

      That was the dumbest thing I’ve read so far. It’s so stupid it suggests that no people are accountable for their actions.

      There hasn’t been a beheading in Britain for HUNDREDS of years until Muslims showed up.

      There hasn’t been a beheading in America since the 18th Century until Muslims and Mexicans showed up.

      Muslims strap bombs to themselves and explode at the World Cup and you’re talking about “fat kids”?

      You’re a moron. No serious, you’re actually stupid. You’re so stupid you can’t tell the difference between white Christians having a bake sale and Muslims raping little girls, grinding them into kebabs, serving them on the menu, and laughing about it. You can’t tell the difference between white Christians providing food and medicine to Haiti and Mexicans and Muslims beheading people. You’re that stupid.

  • Harold Houser

    The truth is, if muslims put down their weapons and hate today, there would be virtually no armed conflicts in the world tomorrow. . . but if all non-muslims put down our arms today, we would all be dead or dying at the hands of the muslim hoard tomorrow. . .  there is an incurable human cancer and its name is Islam. . ..

  • Anonymous

    I am amazed at the intelligence and respect these three men have shown. I am only in my teenage years but i think that you guys missed the point of the entire discussion. I believe that the point of this was to show that each religion or lack there of is about perfecting our selves. Striving to make ourselves and everyone around us better people and to be happy. Now If people find comfort in Jesus Christ then my all means who are we to deprive them of their two rights? Others find it illogical to have an all powerful being watching over us. That’s fine too. Another issue is the short sided perspective I’ve seen in these comments. I believe that to each his own and that growing up in a Mormon home doesn’t force you to be a Mormon. That goes for the rest of the classes we form our selves in. In the end we choose to be offended or to lash out. I also find it interesting you are using the bible to fight someone else. doesn’t that defeat the purpose of that book? I simply think that a more open mind to things might benefit some and if that person finds that it isn’t giving them a long term happiness then dismiss it.

               As I said before I appreciate Glenn for setting this up and opening a respectful and insightful discussion on how others see this point.  

  • Anonymous

    Professor : You are a Christian, aren’t you, son ?

    Student : Yes, sir.

    Professor: So, you believe in GOD ?
    Student : Absolutely, sir.Professor : Is GOD good ?Student : Sure.Professor: Is GOD all powerful ?Student : Yes.Professor: My brother died of cancer even though he prayed to GOD to heal him. Most of us would attempt to help others who are ill. But GOD didn’t. How is this GOD good then? Hmm?(Student was silent.)Professor: You can’t answer, can you ? Let’s start again, young fella. Is GOD good?Student : Yes.Professor: Is satan good ?Student : No.Professor: Where does satan come from ?Student : From … GOD …Professor: That’s right. Tell me son, is there evil in this world?Student : Yes.Professor: Evil is everywhere, isn’t it ? And GOD did make everything. Correct?Student : Yes.Professor: So who created evil ?(Student did not answer.)Professor: Is there sickness? Immorality? Hatred? Ugliness? All these terrible things exist in the world, don’t they?Student : Yes, sir.Professor: So, who created them ?(Student had no answer.)Professor: Science says you have 5 Senses you use to identify and observe the world around you. Tell me, son, have you ever seen GOD?Student : No, sir.Professor: Tell us if you have ever heard your GOD?Student : No , sir.Professor: Have you ever felt your GOD, tasted your GOD, smelt your GOD? Have you ever had any sensory perception of GOD for that matter?Student : No, sir. I’m afraid I haven’t.Professor: Yet you still believe in Him?Student : Yes.Professor : According to Empirical, Testable, Demonstrable Protocol, Science says your GOD doesn’t exist. What do you say to that, son?Student : Nothing. I only have my faith.Professor: Yes, faith. And that is the problem Science has.Student : Professor, is there such a thing as heat?Professor: Yes.Student : And is there such a thing as cold?Professor: Yes.Student : No, sir. There isn’t.(The lecture theater became very quiet with this turn of events.)Student : Sir, you can have lots of heat, even more heat, superheat, mega heat, white heat, a little heat or no heat. But we don’t have anything called cold. We can hit 458 degrees below zero which is no heat, but we can’t go any further after that. There is no such thing as cold. Cold is only a word we use to describe the absence of heat. We cannot measure cold. Heat is energy. Cold is not the opposite of heat, sir, just the absence of it.(There was pin-drop silence in the lecture theater.)Student : What about darkness, Professor? Is there such a thing as darkness?Professor: Yes. What is night if there isn’t darkness?Student : You’re wrong again, sir. Darkness is the absence of something. You can have low light, normal light, bright light, flashing light. But if you have no light constantly, you have nothing and its called darkness, isn’t it? In reality, darkness isn’t. If it is, well you would be able to make darkness darker, wouldn’t you?Professor: So what is the point you are making, young man ?Student : Sir, my point is your philosophical premise is flawed.Professor: Flawed ? Can you explain how?Student : Sir, you are working on the premise of duality. You argue there is life and then there is death, a good GOD and a bad GOD. You are viewing the concept of GOD as something finite, something we can measure. Sir, Science can’t even explain a thought. It uses electricity and magnetism, but has never seen, much less fully understood either one. To view death as the opposite of life is to be ignorant of the fact that death cannot exist as a substantive thing.Death is not the opposite of life: just the absence of it. Now tell me, Professor, do you teach your students that they evolved from a monkey?Professor: If you are referring to the natural evolutionary process, yes, of course, I do.Student : Have you ever observed evolution with your own eyes, sir?(The Professor shook his head with a smile, beginning to realize where the argument was going.)Student : Since no one has ever observed the process of evolution at work and cannot even prove that this process is an on-going endeavor. Are you not teaching your opinion, sir? Are you not a scientist but a preacher?(The class was in uproar.)Student : Is there anyone in the class who has ever seen the Professor’s brain?(The class broke out into laughter. )Student : Is there anyone here who has ever heard the Professor’s brain, felt it, touched or smelt it? No one appears to have done so. So, according to the established Rules of Empirical, Stable, Demonstrable Protocol, Science says that you have no brain, sir. With all due respect, sir, how do we then trust your lectures, sir?(The room was silent. The Professor stared at the student, his face unfathomable.)Professor: I guess you’ll have to take them on faith, son.Student : That is it sir … Exactly ! The link between man & GOD is FAITH. That is all that keeps things alive and moving.P.S.I believe you have enjoyed the conversation. And if so, you’ll probably want your friends / colleagues to enjoy the same, won’t you?Forward this to increase their knowledge … or FAITH.By the way, that student was EINSTEIN.

  • Anonymous

    One of the more interesting and thoughtful posts on this website.

  • Anonymous

    I love Rabbi Lapin and I was sad to see that he was not given a chance to say much and many times when he tried to speak, he was interrupted.  Very few questions were addressed to him, also.  He is such a brilliant mind and everything that he says is so profound and amazing!!!  Maybe Glenn will bring him back to a one-on-one so that we can all benefit from his wisdom and grace.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you so much for bringing different groups together and finding the common ground and best parts of each one. This was done here and you might like the perspective and know at least one of the participants.

  • Justone View

    This is good programing. Reasoning together we can all come to learn and realize something about our selves and about the other. Joseph Campbell said and I agree “Love your neighbor because he IS your self.” Anyone who has done much meditation and has experience the state or condition where the sense of self simply dissolves come to SEE and realize with new eyes. That we are in fact the same creature and at that deepest of levels we KNOW that we would NOT violate my self with in another person. Now, most of us never realize this and so the ego in each of us gets us into all this BS that makes like so complicated, frustrating but we are one and just do not know it. The devil, as they say, is in the details that separate us.

  • Anonymous

    I was watching Penn and another guest talking about gun control on, of all places, the Wendy Williams show several weeks ago.  The other guest was talking about how mass shootings “never” happen in other countries.  That same day, there was a man in Sweden that shot several of his neighbors.  The problem today is that people that don’t know what they are talking about get to go on TV and talk like they know what they are talking about.  When something like that happens, we need to write into shows, such as the Wendy Williams show and tell them that they are wrong.  Maybe we can fix the “intellect” problem this way.  

  • Anonymous

    New International Version (©2011)
    “He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.” Eccl. 3:11

     Don Richardson has written a book that would be helpful: Eternity in Their Hearts.

    Both good men. It is possible to be a good person without knowing Christ. It’s also possible to not be a very nice person even though you’re a Christian. Some people struggle harder than others to lead holy lives. We have personalities, backgrounds, things we’ve had to deal with, etc, that mold us into what we are and those things may not suddenly all become 100% wonderful the minute we accept Jesus into our hearts. We continue to struggle to become what He wants us to be for some time, possibly the rest of our lives. But the struggle is worth it. Walking with Him is worth it. Knowing Christ is worth any and all struggles to give up the things in our lives that are not pleasing to Him. Another useful book would be The Becomers by Keith Miller.In reality, the answer to the question is: YES. But it would also be very helpful if those who are Christians right now would all act like they are.

  • sunset kayak

    Hey Glenn!  Why don’t you ever ask Penn Jillette about his avowed Satanism?  Or about his t-shirt he loves to wear bearing the slogan “Team Satan 666″?  Why do you wear Illuminati and Skull n Bones Society emblems on your sweaters and cummerbund to black tie affairs?  One needs only to “google” those images.  Or how about the Masonic pillow sitting ever-so-conspicuously on this couch situated between Jillette and Lapin?  Come out of the closet Glenn?  Admit you’re a Mason.

  • Marilyn Campiz

    A Jew, Christian and an Atheist.  Where is a Mulim?  Why are you excluding them from the conversation??

    • Anonymous

      Why don’t you move to Mecca and ask them?

  • Take 2

    We are all born with the good grace of God and free will. God also made or makes both good and evil for his own good purposes. What Penn is describing is laws of nature similar to tribel laws with naghboring tribes ie However, being of giant structure cannot understand bully or feitus rules of survival. Starbuck is not a good example of a three level American society.

  • Nanette

    The question by the rabbi was asked for an honest opinion, “would the world be better if the Muslims were evangelical Christians..why? Because all one has to do is read and understand that Christianity is about love of others and Islam is about death to others!

  • Anonymous

    The bizarre pillow prominently displayed on the couch says it all. Skull and cross bones crowned displays the true belief of the host and most likely his guests.

    • Anonymous

      Yeah, you’re an idiot but you’re a Useful Idiot.

      • Anonymous

        Thanks for the insult. I guess you just believe it is meaningless decoration.

        • Anonymous

          Thanks for being a Libtard.

          You should move out of your white neighborhood and live in Atlanta, Detroit, or Oakland. Of course you won’t because you’re a Libtard.

  • John W. Morehead

    I just now came across this due to Glenn’s mention of this on his radio program this morning. Whether one agrees with Jillette’s answer to Lapin’s question is not the most important thing in the exchange, in my view. Instead, these video clips demonstrate a respectful and deep conversation. The important thing is the way we discuss our irreconcilable differences across religious and irreligious lines. This is the formula for our work at the Foundation for Religious Diplomacy ( and The World Table (, and I hope we can introduce these to Glenn one day soon.

  • Grant

    So what is the result of all of this materialistic self
    aggrandizement? Billions upon billions of dollars spent on the
    establishment and maintenance of these Castles of religion. All directed
    by people of questionable intent. Meanwhile in the underbelly of the
    world, destitute beings are living in sub-human conditions of filth,
    starvation and destitute sickness. This is one result of religion.

    Does religion seek to resolve this? Some, but no where near enough!
    More money is poured into the building of Church’s and place’s of
    worship that can only do one thing. Demand more….. God may be
    in those churches, but more likely HE is out working with those
    that cannot put money into churches, don’t you think?

    People killing people because of their perverted interpretation of what they
    have been told GOD approves of! GOD approves of you killing your brother?


    If we were to redirect all those life giving dollars – just imagine how
    many people we could lift out of the hell of a life of poverty to a
    life of people helping people to live comfortably.

    To do this
    takes great courage and a resolve of purpose. Shed religion and take on a
    new life of compassionate Spirituality and spend your tithes on the
    people instead of religion.

    How much closer to GOD do you think you would be by changing your mind??????

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