Comments about ‘Joe Cannon: God watches over the universe; he 'is not dead nor doth he sleep'’

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Published: Sunday, June 28 2009 12:00 a.m. MDT

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If god created the universe, I assume he did it for us to inhabit. If so, why did he create so much of it. It seems we are going to have a difficult time inhabiting all those planets in just our galaxy with its hundred or so billion stars, let alone the hundreds of billions of other galaxies he created. Such wastefulness.

But then again, you can't explain who created god, so you're back to square one. So much for your logic.


.... and no one can explain who created the first protozoan who 'fathered' all the rest. It is one of the mysteries of life, for believers in God or Darwin.

Who said, let alone proved, that all planets except our own in our galaxy are uninhabited? Who claimed that all planets are exclusively for habitation, or that they are all to be inhabited at once?

I do not think that it would take more than a million years ( no time at all in eternity) to inhabit a billion or trillion planets.
Just double our present, admittedly relatively small, population a billion times and tell me what number you get.


But when science does explain how the first crystal replicated, and that is happening as we speak, then, where are you going to retreat? Since before Galileo, religionists have nowhere to go but backward into the realm of the unfalsifiable.

Those who believe those trillions of planets were made for man by a god are like the crazy ruler in ancient Greece who thought all the ships which came into the harbor, came just for his gratification.


Excellent series. It does not discount science, but shows the emptiness of only science as a person's explanation for life. God is very much in control, and just because some mere mortal with a few decades of limited experience doesn't understand it all, doesn't lessen that fact.

Thanks Joe for bringing this discussion forward. It has been off limits in the public for too long.


Religion does a poor job of explaining things that Science can, and things can easily be altered like the bible to fit whatever view you are trying to get people to accept. An example is "In the beginning the Gods created the heavens and the earths." With a little bit of translation and editing what most Bibles now read "In teh beginning God created the heaven and the earth." That isn't much of a change but it is highly significant.

At one point there was a greater belief in a plurality of Gods. Today, at least in the US, it seems a belief that there is one God prevails.

Chuck, from someone else's perspective there is no emptiness in believing only in Science. Your statement shows you lack the cognitive ability to see from someone else's point of view. The purpose of life is still to be happy, whether you believe in a God or not. Please expand your horizons instead of being so gloomy.


"It does not discount science, but shows the emptiness of only science as a person's explanation for life."

As an Atheist I love it when people tell me how my beliefs make me feel... I'll go crawl into a corner now and cry, because I'm so miserable. *rolls eyes*


I received this joke via EMail years ago and believe it might have a place in this discussion:

A group of self-congratulatory scientists were talking among themselves and boasting about how their scientific methods were so advanced they could now create human beings, just like God, even better than God. They were very anxious to prove to the world that science was greater than God and that God was totally irrelevant. After talking about the best way to prove that God was unnecessary to mankind, they decided to challenge God to a contest in front of the peoples of the world to prove who could create the best human. God calmly accepted the challenge.

The day of the contest came and the scientists eagerly went first, sure of their ultimate triumph. One knelt to gather up a fistful of dust with which to create a human.

God said, Oh no, no, noget your own dirt.

Lew Jeppson

Mr Cannon, I think you see only part of the picture. The most significant development of the 19th century was the rise of the self-regulating market, which created unprecedented technological development and accumulation of wealth, but which also made labor (e.g. people) into a commodity. This is the riddle with which we deal today. How will the Gospel make people less of a commodity?


I enjoyed this article and your series immensely. They were well reasoned and written.

Those who cling to science and the physical exclusively do not understand that the spirit precedes the physical. Because they have the cart before the horse, they will always come up short in their analysis and understanding.

Ironically, now that science has discovered the invisible world from the sub atomic level to the outer galaxies, many still refuse to consider the unseen but very real world of the Spirit and dismiss the testimony of millions who have felt its powerful influence.

Mike Richards

This series has been of great worth. Mr. Cannon has provided all of us with enough material to keep us busy for a long time to come - unless we already know it all and are beyond being teachable.

There are two classes of individuals who are not popular with God, the proud and "they that do wickedly". Who is a proud person? Could it be someone who thinks he knows it all, when he knows almost nothing? Who is a wicked person? Is it someone who is in open rebellion against greater knowledge, someone who knows better, but chooses to live counter to that knowledge?

Knowing the science of HOW God does something would be interesting, but of little real value because His abilities, His "tools", and His methods would be beyond our ability to replicate.

Knowing the religion of WHY God does something has value. If we begin to understand why He gave us life, why He gave us a place to live and why He gives us rules that we may govern ourselves using His methods and His pattern, we may just find a way to improve ouselves while helping others carry their own burdens.


Lew, I'm with you on this one. In the company I work for, which is owned by Episcopalians, there is a blessing on the wall from the day the company was opened. One passage says something to the effect that may the employer and the employees work together for their mutual benefit.

Our company pays a little more than the competition and expects a little more in return. We promote almost exclusively from within and turnover is low.

I think they ARE following gospel teachings and I don't feel like a commodity - I feel valued. Now not everyone can make six figures in the company, but they are receiving the experience and training to make a good living - either by advancement with us or going somewhere else if the opportunity presents itself.

I believe this is how it's supposed to work. If only more employers treated their workers as valuable assets and if only more employees gave their employers 100% rather than expect payment for every tiny act and a blind eye to their endless personal calls and surfing the internet on company time.

C almond

I find it ironic the conflicting views religious people take towards scientists. On one hand I have many times heard it mentioned by Lds people and others, that the true insights of Scientists are from God, 'revealed' through that particular person. Yet scientists are also criticized for their abandonment of god and increasingly materialistic perspective. The most successful and accomplished of all scientists are generally those who are the most atheist in their thinking. Why then would God be continually 'blessing them with insight' into the functioning of the Universe while withholding it from the more religiously minded? It seems ironic indeed that god would choose to 'reveal' so much of his truth to those who most dispute his existence.


SS | 11:53 a.m. We secularist say:"When you pay minimum wage, you get minimum wage workers."

"If donkeys had gods, their god's would have long ears."

We have the endemic person. This is who we are. When my family picked the prophet du jour it was the idea that earth was ending soon and by following they could be god's special people.

What king of mind set feels unity with imminent endings, damnation and harsh judgments? These are ideas people with depression find magnetic.

My family overlooked a strange story because they already believed. They were seeking affirmation. They created a god in their image.


I challenge any of you religious people to name even one piece of knowledge that god has given to mankind that wasn't already available in human society. On the other hand there is not enough space to list the millions of bits of "knowing" made available from science. And I predict with perfect confidence that in the future, all our knowing is going to come from science and none of it from god.

If there is an omnipotent god directing the affairs of man, he is very stingy with his knowledge.

Science simply means knowledge. Knowing is what science produces. How can that be wrong or bad in any way?


Thank you for your perspective on religious and scientific history and thought through the ages. I plan on referencing your thoughts later on when my history career kicks off.

I am very glad the Deseret News was willing to publish these great writings summarizing the historical shifts in thought and belief through the ages to explain society as it stands today - an undersanding that seems to have been lost in this modern age of tv and computers and digital music - something that not many people have even thought about - something mostly ignored by the decision-makers in media/academia/politics, who seem to have completely distanced themselves from anything deemed "non-secular (an oxymoron)."

Having been raised Mormon with the all-encompassing maxim that "the Glory of God is Intelligence, or, in other words, Light and Truth," I believe time will both vindicate the words of the prophets and scientists enlightened from above, and meld both scientific and religious truth into one happy, perfectly-balanced, well-understood at-one-ment, where all truth has its chance to shine brightly, irrespective of the opinions of mankind, who, if we are honest, realize there are many things we do not yet know.

Bill S.

My University degrees provided me with a lot of knowledge of things, but failed to provide me with the meaning and purpose for my life and the life of others. My faith in God provides me with that essential and vital part of life.


You issued a challenge. Here is my response for all who are interested.:

1. The "Word of Wisdom", revealed by God through Joseph Smith, was not had by the world. It came in 1833 and is recorded in Section 89 of the Doctrine and Covenants. Pick up a copy at a thrift store for about a dollar or so.

2. The macro-organisation of the planetary systems as recorded in the Pearl of Great Price, relating to Fascimilie Number 2 and its Explanation in the Book of Abraham. Yuo'll find it after the Doctrine and Covenants.

3. The Book of Mormon explains the origin of the former inhabitants of the Americas.

Word of Wisdom

This pronouncement by Joseph Smith was nothing new. People already knew the ill effects of liquor and tobacco.

As for the origin of ancient Americans, Mormon scientists and geneticists proved they were not from a lost tribe of Israel. Not to mention the archaeologists who have never found evidence for ancient Israelis.

Egyptologists and linguists easily proved that The Book of Abraham is fiction.

Blind faith will deceive you.

John Gilmore

Is @duff 2:21 serious?

I could have made the same three points as an atheist joke.

Yeah, the word of wisdom came out of thin air.

Yeah, the pearl of great price and the fascimilies are not complete and proven fabrications.

Yeah, the native americans came from Jerusalem.


John Gilmore

I posted a nice comment on this at about 1 in the morning, which the monitors chose not to publish for whatever reason.

It seems the monitors are perfectly willing to publish my rabid liberal opinions, and yet, they reject my atheistic ones. I honestly don't get it.

I think this article is timely in that it explains why so many religious people feel we don't have a responsibility as a so-called civilized country to guarantee health care for our citizens. the 22,000 who die yearly in this country because of lack of insurance "are in a better place." And god is in control. He helped in the 1820's and 1830's, and he's still running the show now, so why raise our taxes when all suffering is dictated by him for our benefit?

Also, global warming, global shwarming. Somebody got a patriarchal blessing recently that promised the second coming before his death...

Please publish, monitors. Anonymous people come ranting and you publish. I'm not anonymous, I take responsibility for my opinions.

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