| The divine comedy|
“”Ray Comfort is disappointingly a creationist, not a soft-core porn star or at least the owner of a chain of casual restaurants inevitably located off interstate exits.
|—Scott Lemieux, Lawyers, Guns, and Money|
Comfort is a young Earth creationist and opposes evolution. His arguments for a young Earth are entirely unfounded in science, demonstrate basic misunderstandings of both evolution and science in general, and often aren't even based on reality. For example, he is well known for his banana argument, which claims that the banana is so perfect that it must have been intelligently designed in nature, despite the fact that the banana is a product of human artificial selection. He also really likes linking Hitler and evolution.
Comfort frequently attacks atheism, humanism, and the lack of God-worship as the sources of modern sins, such as homosexuality and school shootings. He frequently discusses supposedly iron-clad proofs of God (which generally rely on "common sense" and Pascal's Wager) and methods of evangelism (which generally rely on spamming out a list of pre-written loaded questions).
- 1 Background
- 2 Influence
- 3 Criticism of evolution
- 4 Arguments for Christianity
- 5 Christian views
- 6 Alt-med quackery
- 7 Media presence
- 8 Bibliography
- 9 Notable debates
- 10 See also
- 11 External links
- 12 Notes
- 13 References
Comfort was born on December 5, 1949, in New Zealand.
He was a minister at the Calvary Chapel Fellowship, as was his son-in-law, Emeil Zwayne. The Calvary Chapel, founded by Chuck Smith,[note 1] teaches the Holy Trinity (Father, Son, Holy Ghost) and that the Bible is inerrant. Calvary Chapel espouses a premillennial eschatology in which Christ's Second Coming and thousand-year reign as King of the Earth will occur after the rapture and tribulation.
Despite lacking any formal training in theology or ministry, Comfort moved his family from Christchurch, New Zealand to Southern California, US in 1989 to begin his Way of the Master ministry. He based 'Way of the Master' on insights and lectures originally published at some point between 1982 and 1984 in "Hell's Best Kept Secret". Before his relocation, the dimunitive Comfort was prone to standing in Christchurch's Cathedral Square and haranguing passers-by with his right-wing animus against abortion, homosexuality and feminism.
Comfort often provides the following biography in his books and websites:
“”Ray Comfort is a best-selling author and co-host (with Kirk Cameron) of the award-winning TV program "Way of the Master". Comfort was a platform speaker at the American Atheists Inc. Convention and, along with Cameron, debated atheists on ABC's "Nightline". He is the author of more than 60 books, including The Evidence Bible (a Gold Medallion Award finalist), God Doesn't Believe in Atheists, and The Way of the Master. He and his wife, Sue, live in Southern California, where they have three grown children.
Comfort's YouTube channel, "Living Waters", had 739,000 subscribers and 140 million views in November 2020. As of January 2016, Comfort's Facebook, which he often uses, had 515,000 likes, and the Living Waters / Way of the Master Facebook had 325,000 likes. Comfort's book You Can Lead an Atheist to Evidence, but You Can't Make Him Think was a #1 bestseller in the "Atheist" and "Apologism" categories on Amazon in February 2009, when it debuted, pushing Richard Dawkins' The God Delusion to #2 in "Atheist".
Comfort's Living Waters Ministry is a 501(c)(3) organization and so has public financial records; its most recent public 990 form, from 2014,[note 2] states that LWM had a $3,476,215 revenue and $3,390,970 expenses. It lists Ray Comfort as having $128,200 compensation, Emeal Zwayne (Comfort's son-in-law) as $129,018, and Daniel Comfort as $109,163. In the past and possibly the present, other family members received some money, but less than $100,000.
Criticism of evolution
“”If there is ever conflict between Science and Scripture, the problem must be on the science side.
Comfort is a Young Earth creationist (YEC), stating categorically, "there is no such thing as evolution". A large portion of his objections against evolution are argued for the "common man", and are non-scientific, including argument from ignorance, god of the gaps and argument from incredulity.
Interestingly, for a YEC, he is totally evasive about the age of the Earth and threatens to block users from his site for asking. Even when it was pointed out to Comfort during a debate with the Atheist Experience that modern-day medicine depends on the theory of evolution (e.g. creating more effective vaccines), Comfort will say it does not matter - God's word is God's Word. In other words, he's about as receptive to reason as the average brick.
Alternatively, he's an effective salesman who knows how to get the faithful to fork over money for his products to help support his
comfortable lifestyle Godly ministry. While most of his anti-evolution arguments are run-of-the-mill, a few have been so incredibly feeble and outright ridiculous that some commentators wonder if he is actually a Poe.
It is clear that Comfort knows little about science:
- He has no formal education in science, much less biology (or even theology).
- He constantly pipes up the old one liner: "there are no transitional fossils" and asserts that all animals were created by God according to their "kind".
- Many of his anti-evolution arguments show a profound misunderstanding of evolutionary theory. The same goes for several other branches of science. For example, he doesn't seem to understand that according to modern scientific thought, the comets and the water came before life. "[I]f you believe the oceans came from comets, can you tell me where whales, dolphins, porpoises, plus the 28,000 different species of fish came from? I don’t want links to rabbit trails (I will delete those). I want you to tell me in your own words—do you believe that there was life in the rocks/soil waiting for water to come from space? Did the fish come on comets? Or, like the professor, you don’t know?"
Comfort's most-often-repeated attacks on evolution appear to be the Playground-Tested™ method of name calling:
- Comfort has repeated the quote-mine that "Evolution is a fairy tale for grown ups."
- "[C]hurches that are celebrating "Evolution Sunday" this weekend [should] consider having other fairytale celebrations[, such as] [...] "Cinderella Sunday".
- "The only thing scientific about the theory of evolution is that it is science fiction."
That said, the tone of Comfort's arguments is not their main issue. Instead, it is the rampant pseudoscience, documented below:
Comfort set out to prove that God designed bananas; in reality human plant breeders "designed" bananas. The wild bananas do not have the design features that Comfort points to in cultivated bananas and neither do some other fruits like pineapples and coconuts.
However, he's now expanded his fruity teleological article to other fruits such as the orange and coconut, which makes you wonder how he's going to explain fruits like deadly nightshade (poisonous to humans but sometimes mistaken for blackberries), the durian (thorny and stinky), that God-designed grapes are fine for humans, but toxic to God-designed dogs, or that God-designed coconuts falling from the tree may cause injury and even death (surely coconuts could be designed to grow from a low and safe bush?)
Comfort claims to know the difference between what the theory of evolution really is and what the misunderstandings and fabrications (which he claims are the average persons belief) about it are. And he admits that he chooses to argue against the fabrications instead of the real thing.
“”The average person on the street who believes in the theory of evolution isn't as sophisticated as the staunch believers on his blog. You have your "scientific" definition—"The gradual change and diversification of life on earth," and other people (the great majority) have theirs. I’m interested in reaching the average person with the message of everlasting life, therefore I speak their language and address their beliefs.
“”Steven, I have in the past explained that I address the "street" understanding of Darwinian evolution. You are a sophisticated and committed believer in the theory. You have no doubts at all. The average street believer doesn't believe as you do and it’s easy to make him doubt. He knows nothing of mutations, bacteria, populations, that he is supposed to be an ape, and a cousin of bananas. All he believes is that man evolved from apes, and is quick to add, "But I'm not an expert." [While Comfort, of course, is.] So I address him where he is at, and show him that evolution has no scientific basis, and that it's an idea—a fairy tale that he can only receive by faith (as you do). It is not observable in the slightest. I ask where he thinks males and females came from, and why there are male and female in all of the 1.4 million kinds, why fish would evolve lungs while under water, and other questions that make him think about his beliefs. If that offends you and other atheists because you don’t think I have the "right" facts about your beliefs, so be it.
This shows that Comfort has no intention of having an open and honest discussion with scientists regarding the evidence for evolution. All Comfort is concerned with trying to convince the lay person that special creation is the only answer, and he will sell them any lie he can to convince them.
“”Every substantive discussion I have had with Ray has been either "lost" or ended up on the cutting room floor.
|—Peter Nonacs, "An Interview with Creationist, Filmmaker, and Banana-Enthusiast Ray Comfort"|
Comfort is also known for deliberate quote-mining, with many recorded instances to prove it. In his book Evolution: A Fairy Tale for Grownups, he openly admitted in the introduction that he knew he was quote-mining but went ahead anyway because lying for Jesus is justifiable. Comfort repeats the old and refuted creationist quote mines, including one of the most constantly misused: Charles Darwin on the eye. Comfort is a big fan of the argument from design, and loves to talk about how amazing the human eyes are and does not accept that the eye evolved. Comfort does not even accept that the human eye has a blind spot. "I don’t have a blind spot in my eye. Both of them see very well and I am thankful for the 137 million light sensitive cells that make sight possible. Do you have a blind spot in your eye? If you do, I suggest that you see an optician and see if he can either fix it, or get you another eye." Unfortunately for him, we all do have a blind spot.
Evolution vs. the origin of life vs. the big bang
To this day, Comfort falsely links the Big Bang theory, the origin of life (abiogenesis) and evolution as if they are one or as if they are dependent on each other, but the fact is they are separate fields and do not require the others to stand on their own.
“”Okay, here's then what evolution folks think. They think that evolution has no intelligence. It is responsible for the making (oops! I blew it again, by using the word "making," when evolution doesn’t make anything)… it is responsible for the ever so slow development of the human eye, the brain, the blood, the heart, kidneys, liver, the perfect mix of oxygen in the air, the positioning of the sun and the planets, the seasons, male and female of all animals, birds, fish and insects, gravity, the amazing seas, the succulent fruits, beautiful flowers and massive trees.
Evolution only deals with biology and explaining biodiversity. It does not comment on anything outside biology, and thus does not make any claims about the origin of the universe, galaxies or the Earth. Evolution certainly does not claim that "Everything came from nothing." Evolution does not attempt to explain the origin of life. Creationists habitually misdefine their terms, and commonly insist that evolution means "life from non-life". But of course that’s not right either. Evolution explains how life diversifies, not how it began. Since evolution at every level is—by definition—limited to the variation of allele frequencies inherited over generations of living organisms, then it obviously can’t operate where no genomes yet exist. The evolutionary process that Comfort argues against starts with genetics. How the first self-replicating molecules (and later genes) came about may seem similar to evolution, and may even involve a form of natural selection in some way, but it is in fact a very different question called abiogenesis.
Make a rose for me
In his "faith-shaking" documentary Evolution vs. God, Comfort asks skeptics to whip up a rose from nothing. According to his argument, if the rose is not intelligently designed, anyone should be able to make it. Comfort appears not to understand the distinction between an all-powerful, universe-spanning being and mere mortals.
Evolution of sex
“”There is a big bang, life forms, and after millions of years a dog evolves. It is the first dog. He has got legs, tail, teeth, eyes—and it's good he has eyes because he has to look for a female, he has been blind for millions of years but now he can see. He has got to find a female. She has got to be evolved at the right place at the right time with all the reproductive organs and a desire to mate. Because without a female, he is a dead dog.
Is that how Darwin described it? Is that how any evolutionary scientist ever described it? Absolutely not. What Comfort fails to understand to this day is that animals certainly do not live for millions of years and then suddenly grow features along with a mere peripheral female (the sexist implications may not have been intended, though this "important accessory to males" view on females echoes how the Bible treats females) that comes from nowhere. There was no first dog, there were carnivores, males and females able to reproduce together and gradually over millions of years evolving to become more dog-like.
It seems that Comfort thinks that evolution claims that a dog can exist and live for millions of years. Not only is he so old, he is without eyes or sight. This entire time he is alive, there happens to be no female dog, but then how was he even born if not from a female? The biggest piece that reveals Comfort's vast ignorance regarding the theory of evolution is that the theory does not claim that individuals evolve, but that populations evolve, so there would already be males and females present at all times.
Comfort then "quotes" from Ask a Scientist: (quotes in text mark Comfort's quotes)
“”Darwin theorized that mankind (both male and female) evolved alongside each other over millions of years, both reproducing after their own kind before the ability to physically have sex evolved. They did this through "asexuality" ("without sexual desire or activity or lacking any apparent sex or sex organs"). Each of them split in half ("Asexual organisms reproduce by fission (splitting in half).")
Darwin "theorized" no such thing. Humans reproduce sexually, as do all primates, as do all mammals, as do most vertebrates, as do a great many animals (and plants). There was no period where males and females evolved separately. The nice quote from Ask a Scientist refers to single-celled organisms — no human being has ever reproduced by splitting in half. We evolved from precursor populations containing both males and females.
In response to PZ Myers, who wrote a blog explaining the evolution of sex and elephants, Comfort responded with the following:
“”Let’s go back even further (100 million years ago) to pre-pre-elephants that also contained males and females. At what point of time in evolutionary history did the female evolve alongside the male? And why did she evolve? Then explain, if you would[,] professor, why horses, giraffes, cattle, zebras, leopards, primates, antelopes, pigs, dogs, sheep, fish, goats, mice, squirrels, whales, chickens, dinosaurs, beavers, cats, human beings and rats also evolved with a female, at some point of time in evolutionary history. Professor, I know you believe, but please, give us who are healthy skeptics some empirical evidence. Remember, stupid people like me want good hard evidence before we, like you, become believers in Darwin’s theory.
For starters, why does Comfort insist that the male always came first?
Second, if we all share a common ancestor whose population consisted of male and female, and given varying genetic frequencies among reproductive populations (leading to (usually subtle) changes in their morphological or physiological composition, which—when compiled over successive generations—can increase biodiversity) and the fact nothing can’t outgrow heredity (due to Dollo's law of irreversibility), it is no surprise that horses, giraffes, cattle, zebras, leopards, primates, antelopes, pigs, dogs, sheep, fish, goats, mice, squirrels, whales, chickens, dinosaurs, beavers, cats, human beings and rats all have male and females? How hard is that to grasp? On top of that, the scientific evidence heavily supports this is exactly what happened.
Comfort has many "which came first" questions, supposed to stump evolutionists:
First: Blood or heart?
“”As blood began to evolve, it couldn't get around the body, so he evolved a heart to pump it around. The heart would take a long time to evolve, and it also needed a complex system of blood vessels to evolve. So survival was impossible for the first pre-human primitive life form. But that doesn’t matter to an atheist. It just happened. Evolution-did-it."
It is obvious that Comfort did no research of the earliest living organisms. Some animals and organisms are alive without blood, such as the jellyfish, bacteria and plants. Some animals have blood but no heart.
How did the blood transfer through the body without a heart? Every organism has some muscle-like functions to spread things inside the body, such as digestion. The first veins may not have been veins as we picture them, but as some form of muscle that would assist in blood flow. After many generations when the species grow in size, it makes sense that a device that would help move the flow of blood (like the heart) would be very advantageous so those without it would tend not to compete well.
Second: Gills or lungs?
“”Cause I'm trying to think...here is this sort of animal who's coming out of the ocean without lungs, so he comes out with gills, goes [gasping noises] runs back to water and just keeps coming out until lungs develop?
Comfort is now using a straw man against Lamarckian evolution, not Darwin's theory of evolution. Lamarck's concept pre-dated Darwin. Under Lamarckian evolution, physical traits were passed from parent to offspring (e.g. if your arm muscles are strong from constant weight lifting, then your offspring will have more muscular arms).
Again, it is clear that Comfort is completely ignorant of several facts. Gills pre-date lungs; however, several fish have modified parts of their gut to exchange atmospheric gases. One such group is commonly referred to as lungfishes. The lungfish is a freshwater fish which has the ability to breathe air with lungs. Fossil and embryological evidence supports the existence of a lineage from early fishes which developed accessory breathing organs as pouches branching off their guts (and breathed by swallowing air), which then were modified over time to become the separate lungs of the early amphibians. Comfort, in attempting to make this sound as absurd as possible, relies on his own ignorance of actual evolutionary science and our inherent inability to properly conceive of large spans of time, portraying one individual creature, at one point in time. This oversimplification of speciation doesn't accurately reflect scientific explanations.[note 3]
Several transitional fossils possess four pseudo-limbs, lungs, and internal gills.
Comfort has written twice about a National Geographic article regarding seven "missing links" that have been found since Darwin and then immediately stated that the fossils in the article are missing and completely imaginary:
In 2009, the National Geographic News reported that leading scientists were asked for their picks of the most important fossils that show evolution in action. They headlined "Seven Major 'Missing Links' Since Darwin," and the number one missing link was a "Fishapod." They don't have empirical evidence for the Fishapod, but they do have a painting. This is an artist's rendition (his mental image) of what the Fishapod may have looked like. He did a good job.
Then a few months later, despite all the corrections he got the previous time, repeats the same line again (emphasis added):
So there you have it. The "Fishapod" is a crocodile head and a fish body. Another name for the fishapod is "Tiktaalik." I don't believe that this crocofish is a missing link. But many do. The article then said, "The discoveries of these and other 'missing link' species have helped dispel what Darwin called perhaps 'the most obvious and gravest objection which can be urged against my theory' of evolution—the former lack of transitional fossil species. But they haven't helped in the slightest. These seven missing links aren't found—links at all. They are just more wild imagination (lies, lies) from the minds of speculators who can't find anything to back up a theory that has to be believed (received with blind faith), and one that has no basis in true science.
Comfort asks for hard evidence, but when given some literally hard evidence, he can with a wave of his hand pretend it imaginary.
Not once in this entire blog or any other material does Comfort give any valid explanations or any form of scientific inquiry to explain why he does not accept Tiktaalik as a transitional fossil. All he has in response to the evidence presented to him (the very hard evidence he constantly demands for) is basically "I don't believe it," an argument from incredulity.
Comfort loves to talk about "kinds", an unscientific label that creationists invented to make the Global Flood easier to explain:
“”"Kind," in creationist jargon, generally refers these days to groups larger than a species but still thought to be related by common descent, such as entire genera or families (e.g. the "cat kind"). There are "species-to-species" transitions in the fossil record (e.g. Stephen Gould described a sequence of transitional fossils between two species of the snail genus Cerion), but presumably if you bothered to consider that rather than simply regurgitate your standard list of slogans, you dismiss this example as "they're still snails" (which of course is on some other creationist's list of standard slogans). Since "kind" is undefined, it's difficult to find a good example of a "kind-to-kind" transitional series… The fault isn’t with the definition of the word "kind." It hasn't changed in the slightest. One more time; here’s the definition: dog-kind, cat-kind, horse-kind, snail-kind, human-kind, etc. The atheist's difficulty is with the so-called evidence for evolution. There isn't any."
In this quote, Comfort admits transitional fossils do exist (contradicting himself) but he is either ignorant or willfully ignorant of the transitional fossils between two distinct animals such as land animals and whales. There are numerous transitional fossils between genera and families, however, Comfort's faith demands that he willingly dismiss them outright. Although, if Comfort accepts that transitional fossils exist between snails, but still calls them snails, then he must accept that transitions exist among apes and he should call them human apes. No matter how much Comfort will deny it, the fact is human beings are apes just as tigers are cats.
Creation requires a creator
“”You can’t have a creation without a creator. Show me a building that didn’t have a builder. Show me a painting that doesn’t have a painter.
Here, Comfort's argument is structured as "A painting had a painter, a watch had a watchmaker, therefore creation must have a creator." What Comfort is doing here is simply asserting and assuming that we live in a creation without any verification or justification:
- Have we seen a building been made without a builder? How about a bridge? Actually, yes we have seen bridges form without a builder. For example this one.
- Likewise, we have seen traps form on their own. Ever heard of the Venus fly trap? It's a plant that traps flies, and we know how it evolved without a creator.
- How about a motor that was made without a motor engineer? Absolutely, behold the bacterial flagellum. The Matzke Model explains and demonstrates the steps to how the flagellum naturally evolved without a designer.
- How about artworks of lines and patterns. Take a look at the designs in sand dunes.
- Forget paintings, have we ever seen a sculpture form without a sculptor? Look at the rock formation in Maui's Iao Valley State Park that bears a striking resemblance to President John F. Kennedy in profile; the eroded mountain on Mars that under coarse-grained resolution looks like a face; the eagle rock off the 134 freeway in Southern California that overlooks the town Eaglerock; or the "Elephant Rock" in Heimaey, Iceland.
- Have we seen other human-like faces pop up naturally in nature? Sure, Christians love to cheer every time they see Jesus' face appear on grilled cheese sandwiches. Same thing with Mother Teresa or the Virgin Mary. It's called pareidolia.
Overall, all of these things occur naturally without invoking an intelligent designer. Since the human brain is hard-wired to detect patterns, we base nature as designed based on our experience of human artifacts. We see patterns in clouds, crystals, and snowflakes, but we already know that they all manifest naturally without a designer. We can test and prove that snowflakes, while having many geometrical patterns, form naturally in the clouds under certain conditions. We also know that evolution of living organisms can develop characteristics that give the illusion of design. The point is, all these things were made naturally without a designer. Comfort presupposes that everything around him is designed, particularly life. The issue here is that there Comfort does not distinguished between naturally made objects versus artificially made objects, rather he seems to insert they are all the same thing. This is why he compares man-made buildings with naturally living things that do not need a designer. This is going way beyond comparing apples and oranges (or perhaps bananas).
Who created God?
Comfort's logic fails when you ask certain questions; like if everything requires a creator, who created God? Comfort's response to this question can be seen in his book The School of Biblical Evangelism:
“”No person or thing created God. He created "time," and because we dwell in the dimension of time, reason demands that all things have a beginning and an end. God, however, dwells outside of the dimension of time." However, when Ray states that "reason" demands that everything had a beginning and end, and yet Ray presents something that does not have a beginning and end, then clearly reason never did demand such a thing, or that God is indeed a created being.
Again, this puts God into the realm of special pleading.
While the laws of physics state that matter cannot be created, Comfort goes a bit further into absurdity by reasoning that since the smartest person in the world cannot make anything from nothing, then God must have been responsible for creating everything. Basically, since we cannot demonstrate that matter can come from nothing, then Comfort says God made it magically out of thin air. Assuming God or gods made the universe is not a good explanation because it leaves unexplained how deity/deities complex enough to create the universe exist. And Comfort maintains - without giving a reason - that it has to be the god of the Bible, not any other god or gods.
This is not true. Science has demonstrated that the universe does not require any creator or divine/supernatural entity to start things. The universe comprises matter and energy, and science reveals that energy and matter cannot be created (though they can be transformed into each other), and this fact alone dismisses Comfort's presupposition that there must be a creator. The evidence thus far points to the Big Bang Theory, which does not say that the universe was created from nothing ex nihilo—that is a common straw man constructed by creationists like Comfort.
Arguments for Christianity
Comfort lays out many arguments for Christianity.
Anti-evidentialism and "common sense" proof of a god
“”I don't have to prove anything to you. I would never be so foolish myself as to put God to the test.
|—Ray Comfort in response to atheist James D. Franz, page 12|
“”God gave us six senses. The sixth sense is common sense and that’s what the atheists and evolutionists lack.
Despite refusing to engage in evidentialist apologetics when inconvenient, Comfort believes that God can be scientifically proven. However, the scientific method is a way of discovering truth by repeatably testing, making accurate predictions, and engaging in peer review. What Comfort repeatedly fails to do is actually test and produce empirical data or a testable model that proves his narrow version of God.
Comfort claims that a person cannot know if something exists until they feel it. For example he has said that people who get an electric shock no longer believe it is harmful, but now know it is harmful. Comfort argues that one knows who God is the way one knows a spouse (and therefore, one supposes, knows there is a god, in some backwards logic handstands); that is, personal experience (Thunderf00t debates Ray Comfort). You feel the love you have for your spouse or child, and you feel the love you have for God. Your spouse or child exist, therefore, God exists. Many, many people talk of their love and experience of God; how could they be wrong?
However, personal experience is not sufficient both because it cannot be empirically tested, and personal experiences can produce countless feelings that seem real but are, in fact, not. For example, many people are convinced they experienced alien abductions. Many of these experiences have been tested several times over the years. The reason why these experiences seem real is because the area of the brain (amygdala, hippocampus, limbic system, etc.) produce feelings near the frontal lobes (the area that determines what is real via touch, smell, taste, etc) and often produce vivid experiences that seem very real. However, Comfort has not ever produced any model or method to distinguish what is real or not, whether his experiences are natural occurrences in his brain or some supernatural interference.
Furthermore, even a verifiable personal experience may only apply to certain circumstances; if I experience illness as the result of eating a particular food, for example, it's not necessarily the case that that food is universally harmful (e.g., I may have an allergy to that food).
Are you a good person?
Comfort's most popular argument is the "are you a good person?" tactic. Hardly a program, book, or interview goes by where Comfort does not use this argument. It is also presented in practically every gospel tract printed and distributed by Way of the Master.
Comfort: Do you think you are a good person?
There are several problems with Comfort's argument:
First: The argument uses the Ten Commandments as a model for sin. Comfort asks you if you have ever lied, stolen, committed adultery in your heart by looking with lust, or taken God's name in vain. Once a person is found guilty of one or all of these, Comfort declares this is why the person should turn to Jesus. Comfort is either ignorant or deliberately dishonest: there is no Commandment anywhere that forbids lying (the Commandment is "Thou Shall Not Bear false Witness Against Thy Neighbor" deals with misrepresentation in courts, not lying in the broad sense). Comfort is also wrong in regards to taking the Lord's name in vain. To Comfort, that means saying things like "OMG" or "oh my God!" This is incorrect, the Commandment forbids taking the Lord's name "Yahweh" under a false oath or a promise not kept, thus making it in vain.
Comfort believes that all forms of lying is prohibited:
“”The dictionary defines a lie as a false statement deliberately presented as being true; a falsehood; something intended to deceive or give a wrong impression. People often claim that they have told only a “white lie.” But there is no difference between a white lie, a half-truth, a fib, or an exaggeration. All are lies in the sight of God. How many murders does one have to commit to be a murderer? Just one. In the same way, if they have told even one lie, no matter what color or size, that makes them a liar. The Ninth Commandment requires the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. God is a God of truth and His Law demands absolute honesty from the heart. Yet the human heart is deceitful above all things. It has been well said that taking the easy path is what makes rivers and men crooked.
|—From The School of Biblical Evangelism: 101 Lessons : how to Share Your Faith|
So all forms of lying are wrong. God deems it just and righteous to send you to an eternal damnation if you lie to your spouse that they look good in their jeans. Apparently, if you lie to a Nazi that you are hiding a Jew in your home, you are just as guilty as if you murdered 100 people, despite you just lied to save a life. Comfort claims he knows the Bible and read it every day without fail for many years, and yet he misses the story of the biblical prostitute Rahab was considered virtuous because she lied to protect Israelite spies (James says Rahab was "righteous" in James 2:25).
Second: As for stealing, Comfort includes even children are held accountable (going against the Christian doctrine Age of Accountability, which holds that children are born in sin, they are not accountable for their actions). In the Book of Genesis, Jacob steals from his brother, lies to his father, and is continually rewarded by god. Jesus himself is fine with stealing where he tells his disciples to go into town and take a horse without paying for it, regardless if the owner is willingly or not to give up the horse (Mark 11:2-4, Matthew 21:2-3, and Luke 19:30-31). Is stealing always bad? Don't we consider Robin Hood a folk hero?
Third: This argument is a perfect example of begging the question: the argument needs God to exist, to prove why you should believe in God. It is no better than using the Eight Fold path to prove reincarnation
Fourth: It's all rather hypocritical, as Comfort has been caught lying and stealing on more than one occasion. In his book Evolution: A Fairy Tale for Grownups, he openly admitted in the Introduction that he knew he was deliberately quote-mining but went ahead and published the book anyway because lying for Jesus is justifiable. He also plagiarized Stan Guffey's work, and recognizes that plagiarism is a form of stealing (see the plagiarism section on this page)
Fifth: This argument starts with asking "are you a good person?" This is misleading. According to the religion Ray Comfort follows, the Ten Commandments were given by God to Moses to give to the Israelites (the Jews) — the Chosen People. God did not tell Moses to give the Commandments to the Egyptians, the Canaanites, the Greeks, the Chinese, or anyone else. So if anyone is going to examine whether another person has broken the Ten Commandments, the first question should not be "are you a good person?", rather more accurately the question should be "are you a good Jew?" If this argument was rewritten to examine if someone have broken any of the Five Pillars of Islam, and a person failed to uphold a single tenet, that would not make them a bad person, it would make them a bad Muslim. The point is, religious laws do not determine if a person is ethical or good in general, it only determines whether a person is worthy for the reward offered by said religion. And that is Ray's goal, not to see if a person is good or not, but to draw people into his religion by making them feel guilty for breaking Jewish laws, claim they will face punishment, then offer them salvation (Jesus) and reward (Heaven).
The parachute argument is a reworking of Pascal's Wager. The premise is that there are lots and lots of good things out there, like famous art, money, a new iPad … but when push comes to shove, only some things can actually save you. If you were on a plane that was crashing and were handed a Mona Lisa, you would cast it aside—it's nice, but not when your life is on the line. The same applies with cash or a new car. But if someone hands you a parachute you take it, cause it will save you. God is the parachute. We're not sure why we are supposed to believe the analogy to a crashing plane, much less know it, but Comfort asserts it's true.
“”When men don't fear God, they give themselves to evil.
“”This society in which we live is radically changing. What previous generations saw as evil is now embraced as being good. It is a dangerous and slippery slope upon which we stand when we reject what Solomon called the beginning of wisdom — the fear of God.
Comfort appears to derive most of his views on the world from his interpretation of the Bible. This leads to some … interesting and … creative … conclusions.
“”The Bible says that the earth is immovable. It cannot be moved. So now is your chance to prove your point. Run outside and move the earth. Perhaps you and your friends could jump on it, or find a rocky outcrop and push it together. Maybe after that little experiment you will concede that the earth is immovable.
Interestingly, you can actually move the earth: by jumping. This will move the earth about a hundredth of the radius of a hydrogen atom. If you want the earth to move a full hydrogen atom you'll need 99 friends. This is due to Newton's third law of motion, which is often phrased as "every action has an equal and opposite reaction". When something of appropriate mass—say, an appropriately sized asteroid—happens to jump on the earth, the earth may be so moved that it changes its orbit. Speaking of which, isn't orbiting around the sun sort of like moving? Or what about the entire solar system orbiting the center of the galaxy about every 225 million years; plus, the milky way galaxy itself—with everything containing it it, including the Earth—is moving.
“”But there is no Biblical precedent for a message of life improvement upon conversion. None. In fact, the Bible says you will have trials, tribulations, temptation, persecution.
Christians of the Comfort type are made to feel guilty and to fear God's wrath if they glance at another person and think "Isn’t he/she attractive?" According to Comfort (and Jesus himself, Matthew 5:27-30) looking at another person with lust is equivalent to adultery.
Most modern psychologists disapprove strongly of the "Endless
Love guilt" game. Psychologists have long argued that these feelings of random (but unacted upon) lust, feelings of curious sexuality, or even feelings of desire that are acted upon if no one is hurt (the same feelings that Comfort denounces as filthy and sinful), are natural and involuntary. Trying to suppress those feelings is nearly impossible and can cause psychological harm as can blaming yourself or laying guilt on yourself.
“”Romans 1:26-32 is seen by many as a description of a civilization that eventually gave itself to homosexuality and changed "the natural use" into what is "against nature" (vs 26), "leaving the natural use" of the woman (vs 27)...
Homosexuality is unnatural, and homosexuals are said to be "without natural affection" (Vs 31, italics added). In this passage scripture calls the affection they had for each other "vile" (vs 26) and a burning "lust" (vs 27). The phrase "without natural affection" means that they were without the natural affection that manifests in families made up of one man and one woman. There is no "kindred" affection between men.
He then goes on to quote Scott Lively, Janet Porter, and Tony Peirce on how this is somehow going to lead to the end of the world. Avid readers may recognize the logical fault in the line of reasoning Comfort uses.
More recently, Comfort's movie, Audacity, is a mix of scripted scenes where bike messenger "Peter" comes to understand that gays will go to hell through a series of contrived metaphorical events and decides to bring them the Gospel, and Comfort's typical shock-and-awe (and quote-mined) street interviews with passers-by. Corinthians is quoted to suit Ray Comfort without explaining translation uncertainty. The film is aimed not at gays but rather at Christians who are urged to
harass gays bring gays to repent and feel bad about themselves.
“”I believe Kim Davis is a woman of courage, who should be admired for her convictions rather than vilified. This issue stands or falls on whether or not those who are homosexual are born that way. Here now is the conflict for the Christian. We believe that the Bible is God's inspired Word, and it puts homosexuality alongside adultery, fornication and theft as moral choices. It makes it very clear that homosexuality is as much a choice as adultery, fornication or theft.
Truly, the Bible is a more trustworthy source than modern genetics and sociology.
Comfort stooped to his usual tiresome pretzel logic (on the sympathetic forum of WND, of course) in order to explain the shooting spree by James Eagan Holmes in Aurora, Colorado. According to Comfort, it's "the humanistic worldview" that "says that no one is born with a sinful (evil) nature" which makes mass murder "normal", not the fact that Holmes was probably batshit crazy when he perpetrated his crime.
Comfort said the Sandy Hook massacre happened because America has apparently "lost its fear of God." As with all claims of this nature, Ray's God displays remarkably poor and indiscriminate aim, and shocking disregard for collateral damage: since most of the purportedly "guilty" are left untouched, and many of the faithful and innocent (especially children) are killed. If God uses such events to send us messages, it's reasonable to question the morality of the sender of those messages.
In Cults, Sects and Questions (1979), Comfort praises the corporal punishment of children to promote discipline. Comfort states that an unbeaten child is no better than a "bastard" and that withholding the rod "is to put your child in the hand of Satan and co-operate with him in sending your child to hell!" In the same book, he describes how he regularly "canes" his children and that his own mother would "turn grey" if she knew how he treated her grandchildren.
There has been an infamous fabricated quote attributed to Comfort, in the context of the story of Abraham and Isaac: "I would kill a thousand children if God asked me to, that's because I have faith. [....] If the Lord commanded me to rape and kill my own children tonight, it would be done by morning." This is a hoax created by an atheist, and Comfort has rejected the statement.
Comfort seems to subscribe to the view, popular among fundies, that since everything will be destroyed and "made anew" in the End Times, environmental destruction is not a bad thing:
“”The reason atheists and skeptics get so upset when I say it’s good to cut down trees is that this world is all they have. If it gets completely wrecked, it’s all over for them. That’s what they believe . . . that life then ends. That’s unless Mother Nature or Father Evolution (whoever they believe made everything) makes some more trees, etc. Of course if it has to start all over again, they have to wait for around 4.5 billion years. That’s what they believe, and I guess that’s a little too long for them to wait. So they get antsy when Christians are a little flippant about creation. But we can’t help it. We don’t value creation as though our life depends on it. That’s because we know and trust Him who made all things, and if humanity wrecks this earth, we have His immutable promise that He is going to make all things new.
|—"A blogger's confession"|
(It might be remarked that it's disrespectful of God's Creation to outright say you don't value it greatly.)
But don't worry—according to the same blog post, he likes trees.
Relatedly, Comfort claims to have run over his dog while riding his bike because his dog refused to follow his warnings about running in front of his bike. He also claims that, without Judeo-Christian ethics, the atheists of Europe would happily consume "fresh cat casseroles" and "tasty little kitten fingers".
Comfort firmly believes that the Bible (particularly Ezekiel 38) prophesies that Russia will attack Israel at the End Times (or "the latter days", Ezekiel 38:16). Comfort interprets the reference the "Prince of Rosh" in Ezekiel 38 as Russia (using Smith’s Bible Dictionary, p. 584 as proof). Comfort says the Bible prophesies that Russia will combine with Iran, Libya (in Hebrew called "Put"), and "communistic" Ethiopia (in Hebrew called "Cush") and attack Israel (Ezekiel 38:5-8). Comfort claims, "This will take place after an Israeli peace initiative has been successful (Ezekiel 38:11). The Bible even gives the Russian reasoning for and the direction of the attack (Ezekiel 38:5-10), as well as the location of the battle (Armageddon — Revelation 16:16)." Of course Ethiopia isn't communist any more (since 30 years), but never mind.
Apart from Russia attacking Israel, Comfort believes that the end of times as predicted in the Bible is coming. And when it comes, he will be free from punishment and enter Heaven. Comfort compares himself to a man at court, where the judge asks to see evidence of his sin, where his lawyer gets up and says "there is no evidence of his sin. Jesus washed it all away." This analogy kind of falls apart though since the judge, being an omniscient God, would still have the evidence for his sins.
Comfort says the signs reveal the coming end of days, which are (you can listen to Comfort list them off here):
- There will be false Christs and many false prophets who will deceive many. False Bible teachers will have many followers, be money-hungry (Comfort himself of course is not money-hungry), and slander the Christian faith (2 Peter 2:1-2).
- There will be blasphemy; cold-heartedness (there was cold-heartedness in the past for example when child labor was tolerated); intemperance; brutality; rebellious youth; hatred of those who stand up for righteousness; ungodliness; pleasure-seeking; much hypocrisy (even within the Christian church).
- Wars and rumors of wars; Nation rising against nation and intimidating each other. People will be fearful of the future and people will cry for peace. (Was this ever not so?)
- Famines, disease (pestilence), increases in cancer and heart attacks, and there will be earthquakes in various places
- Lawlessness (forsaking of the Ten Commandments)
- The Gospel will be preached in all the world.
- Knowledge and science will be greatly increased.
- Signs from heaven (in the Sun, Moon, and stars) and the sun shall "darken" (which could be that dark smokes block all sunlight)
- Persecution against Christians in all nations (got a ways to go on that one, though doubtless Ray is convinced otherwise)
- Men’s hearts will fail them for fear of the future; humanity will be selfish, materialistic, arrogant, proud.
- Homosexuality will increase. The institution of marriage will be forsaken.
- Increase in occult activity (astrology, horoscopes, Satanism and perhaps Halloween) as well as an increase in cults.
- Vegetarianism will increase (we're a bit puzzled by this one too).
- Men will scoff at the "fact" that God once flooded the earth (as well as Noah). Their motivation for hating the truth will be their love of lust (2 Peter 3:1-7) — wait, what?. Comfort says "The Scriptures tell us that they make one big mistake. Their understanding of God is erroneous. They don’t understand that God’s time frame is not the same as ours. They think (in their ignorance) that God’s continued silence means that He doesn’t see their sins. In truth, He is merely holding back His wrath, waiting for them to repent and escape the damnation of hell. Jesus warned that the sign to look for was the repossession of Jerusalem by the Jews. That happened in 1967, after 2,000 years, bringing into culmination all the signs of the times. (These are combined from Matthew 24; Mark 13; Luke 21; 1 Timothy 4; and 2 Timothy 3.)"
When people say that these things have always happened, Comfort jumps on them saying, "What you said is is exactly what the Bible said you would say, therefore you prove the Bible yet again!"
Comfort's view on salvation changes
with the wind at times.
First: He distills his doctrine of salvation to:
“”[O]nce and for all and the moment you trust in him [Jesus Christ], you are completely justified and made right with God, you are made perfect by God's grace. That has nothing to do with living a good life, pleasing God because you can't because you a lying, thieving, adulterer at heart. The only thing you can do is repent and trust in him. The minute you do, in a heartbeat God justifies you. God cleanses you of your sin and you are born again. God gives you a new heart with a new set of desires and you know you are going to escape death and damnation.
Other Christians disagree with this.[citation NOT needed] He admits that any person can be saved and cleansed of sin the second they repent, making Christianity a get-out-of-jail-free card. Comfort believes that the Bible says that we are saved by grace alone, and not by works. Hitler, murderers, rapists, or anyone else, can be just as wicked as they want their whole life to their last minute, but that's clearly fine with Comfort. Comfort fully buys into this, and when questioned about it during a debate on Nightline with the Rational Response Squad he had nothing to say except silence. Some Christians condemn him for that.[citation NOT needed]
Second: At other times, Comfort puts a serious emphasis on repentance. If you don't manage to stop sinning and to do good works (like
helping the poor evangelizing and bringing Comfort's God's message to other people), your conversion may be a false one and you will go to Hell after all:
“”Merely being sorry for your sins, or confessing them to God won't help you. You must turn from sin (repent)…
A different group of Christians condemn him for that, but his followers apparently overlook the contradiction.
Third: So what does the Bible say about salvation? Is it by grace alone and not by works? Comfort quotes Titus and Ephesians 2:8-9, which says that souls are saved not by works of righteousness, but according to God's mercy. But Psalm 62:12 disagrees: "For you render to each one according to his works." Matthew 16:27 spells it out nicely: "For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works." That does seem as if the Bible has no idea what it thinks.
In 1979, Comfort published More Than Just Comfort: An Answer to Cancer. In this book Comfort displays more than ever that he is a snake oil salesman, starting with the quote on the dust cover that cancer is the "modern day leprosy."
Other gems included in this book include:
“”Therefore you should never take medicine to relieve pain. You should never consult a doctor or go to a hospital for treatment, because you would be interfering with the work of God in your life. If Cancer is the chastening tool of God, then doctors who are fighting cancer are fighting against the work of God. If a preacher or a Christian believes the sickness is a means of chastening, then he should never pray for relief from the sickness, but rather pray that the cancer will continue to grow until the chastening is completed.
(Given the above, it might be that Ray's douchebaggery has actually diminished a bit with time.)
“”There is absolutely no point in being healed in our bodies, then dying in our sins and spending an eternity in hell. It would be better to die of cancer and go to heaven because of that cancer, than to live in perfect health and end up in hell.
“”If doctors were asked to diagnose that woman's case, not one spine specialist in the world would say "Satan has bound her". Doctors would call it arthritis of the spine, or vertebrae out of place, or some other medical term, and they would be right as far as medical terms are concerned. But if you get to the real source of the trouble you will discover that source is Satan.
“”Here is my response: In the book, I am arguing for cancer patients to seek medical treatment, and not to mistakenly believe that God gave them cancer as some sort of punishment/lesson, because if God had done that, then they shouldn't seek treatment until He has finished teaching them their "lesson." You and other atheists have numerous times attempted to make it look as though I'm saying the opposite, by taking it out of context. Any quote that begins with "Therefore" should be a clue that it is quote-mined.
Cancer, then, is just God teaching you a lesson. And Comfort complaining about quote mining detonated irony meters across the globe.
Way of the Master
Together with actor Kirk Cameron (a.k.a. the inventor of the "Crocoduck"), Comfort produces the Way of the Master series including TV shows and internet articles. The masterly way is based on converting evangelists with scare tactics around issues of salvation and Hell. It's worth noting that though they frequently pontificate about the nature of God, and the path to morality, neither Comfort nor Cameron has any formal education in theology.
The Comfortable message amounts to:
- You have broken the Ten Commandments.
- You will go to Hell if you die just now.
- You cannot be forgiven unless you do exactly as Comfort tells you.
Words of Comfort
“”If we go to his blog and extend an invitation, he will simply delete it, thus enabling himself to continue claiming that we just aren’t inviting him, or maybe we’re scaaared of him, or whatever sustains the deluded fiction upon which he has constructed his life. Ray Comfort is a liar. The proof’s in the proverbial pudding.
|—Martin Wagner, "Ray Comfort: pathological liar", The Atheist Experience|
Comfort blogs at "Words of Comfort." Most of the site's arguments against the theory of evolution and atheism are not worth debunking; he'll just keep coming back with more (or maybe even the same ones). This, however, hasn't stopped many atheists from flocking to the blog for a laugh. Comfort got so many of these readers that for a time he named the site "Atheist Central." He used material posted by atheists on the site to help him write quite a bit of very profitable Godly material, including his book You Can Lead an Atheist to Evidence, but You Can't Make Him Think.
On the blog, Comfort forbids foul language (however he interprets "foul") and links to other websites. Either of these, or failure to capitalize "God" and "Jesus", will cause an immediate deletion of their comments. The most irritating part of the rule is no links to other site or articles, especially for people who can provide the evidence Comfort demands…almost as if he weren't interested in facts, information, or actual fact.
More recently, Comfort has focused less on atheism, saying in 2012: "So, the good news for me is that I will start daily blogging again on January 1st, 2012. However, there will be a big change. The blog will be called "Words of Comfort" and it will have a much broader content than just atheism."
Million Dollar gospel tracts
Comfort has been printing Bible tracts that look like a million dollar bill. As of 2009, 9 to 11 million have been distributed; they currently sell for $2 per 100. (So they might look like a million dollars, but they're actually worth a bit less.) The tracts were quite clearly not government-issued:
Reply from PZ Myers:
“”Every little thing that you feel guilty about is treated as a sign that you deserve to go to Hell. Did you take two mints after dinner at the restaurant, instead of just one? Did you accidentally break the handle off one of the teacups in Aunt Tillie’s favorite set? Did you get a glimpse of a naked breast as you were flipping through the cable channels? Then your loving god thinks you should be flayed while swimming in a lake of fire for eternity! Because he’s promising to torture you forever, you better get on your knees and love him right now. And also send Ray $7 for a piece of worthless paper, thank you very much.
After being contacted by a North Carolina bank at which a customer had attempted to cash one of these tracts, US Secret Service agents arrived at Great News Network, an evangelist organization linked to Comfort and Cameron's Way of the Master ministry, and seized their stock of 8,300 "Million Dollar" gospel tracts, on threat of arrest. This spawned a massive uproar among right-wing media,
whining about a government misstep fearful of their persecution by the Feds.
“”The Department of Homeland Security should be tracking dangerous criminals instead of harassing innocent people of faith for handing out religious tracts.
|—Steve Crampton, attorney at Liberty Counsel and not overreacting|
Right-wing legal organization Liberty Counsel successfully (and rightfully) argued that the agents violated the Fourth Amendment by conducting a warrantless search and seizure and that the bill doesn't actually resemble existing currency. Their arguments that the seizure violated the First Amendment right to free speech were not ruled on.
Comfort had a standing $10,000 challenge to anyone who could show him a transitional fossil. However, not just any fossil would do, and Comfort demanded that someone show him a lizard producing a bird, a dog producing a cat or, even stranger, a sheep producing a chicken. The deafening silence to his throwing down of the gauntlet (outside the sound of a million face-palms) only went to prove to Comfort that evolution is false and that transitionals do not exist.
Comfort has a Facebook page—not that we would recommend anyone to spend long periods of time on it—where he once threatened to ban anyone using the term "bibliophile" as he thought it meant "cross between pedophile and Bible". Obviously, this is not the case; apparently Comfort is not a bibliophile as it seems that he has never opened a science book or a dictionary.
Comfort manages to churn out about 5 books a year, but they are typically lightweight in both size and intellect, so this is not really much of an achievement. A lot of his "work" is public domain material that he has taken from elsewhere, collated and published. For example, his <Some dead guy> Gold: Pure. Refined. series of books are just collections of that person's writings or speeches with no serious commentary, analysis, or other additional text.
Comfort's most notable compilations of word-spew:
- Origin of Species: 150th Anniversary Edition Bridge-Logos Publishers (October, 2009) ISBN 0882709194
- Nothing Created Everything: The Scientific Impossibility of Atheistic Evolution. WND Books (October, 2009) ISBN 1935071238
- You Can Lead an Atheist to Evidence, but You Can't Make Him Think: Answers to Questions from Angry Skeptics WND Books (2009) ISBN 1935071068
- Evolution: A Fairy Tale for Grownups (2008)
- Intelligent Design vs. Evolution - Letters to an Atheist (2006), a collection of correspondence between Comfort and James D. Franz, an American atheist.
- Scientific Facts in the Bible: 100 Reasons to Believe the Bible is Supernatural in Origin. Bridge-Logos Publishers (O15, 2001) ISBN 0882708791
Comfort has faced accusations that he copied the work of Stan Guffey without giving credit. Remember, Comfort is the very same guy who likes to frighten people telling them they will go to Hell because they told one or more small lies or stole anything. Even having stolen something small as a child makes somebody a hell-bent thief according to the Comfortable system, yet Comfort stole another man's intellectual property. Comfort knows that was naughty, and said so himself.
“”I do admit to mocking atheists, because mockery is a legitimate form of debate according to my rule Book. God Himself mocks evil men who refuse His moral government
Comfort is quite the attention seeker. Apart from the constant street preaching in Los Angeles and confronting hundreds of laymen in public areas, Comfort has challenged Richard Dawkins, Eugenie Scott, and Bill Maher to debate the theory of evolution and intelligent design.
Comfort is not interested in any intellectual debates; rather, he is more interested in a large audience (the bigger, the better). However, his tactics and methods of getting a debate are rather immature and despicable. For instance, once Comfort debates someone, he announces he is somehow on a equal intellectual playing field as scientists like Prof. Dawkins (even though Comfort does not have any degree of any kind). However, whoever Comfort challenges (and often offers thousands of dollars for the person's time) but declines or ignores the offer, Comfort replies in a rather immature whining manner by taunting them and calling them scared. Comfort twists disinterest into fear. For instance, when Comfort challenged Bill Maher, Comfort made the following comment:
“”I am beginning to suspect that some men may have evolved from chickens, or at least that's the impression I get when it comes to evolutionists standing up for their convictions,” notes Comfort. “Mr. Maher can choose the place of the debate. I don’t mind if he has it in front of his audience. He can bill it as ‘Another simple-minded Christian being thrown to the lions.’
Comfort looks like an intellectual "big shot" either way: he appears smart enough to debate a qualified scientist, or the scientist is supposedly scared of Comfort's arguments. The simple truth is that Comfort is a nobody who uses faulty logic and numerous illogical arguments that have already been refuted a thousand times and has proven to be impervious to reason, so debating him is practically pointless. All he wants is an audience to preach to. Perhaps the biggest audience he ever has was the debate with the Rational Response Squad on Nightline television, where Comfort revealed he could not prove God scientifically (which he had promised to do) and that his whole argument relies on faith and belief.
Scientists like Dawkins and Eugenie Scott don't waste their time on people like Comfort, a man who has no intention whatsoever of changing his mind or actually acknowledging valid scientific evidence. Comfort's presuppositionalism and blind faith in his religion demand that he believe, regardless of proof, whereas scientists are interested in honest discussions and an earnest approach to discovering truth. So instead, Comfort usually debates positive atheists who have a remarkable audience, such as leaders of atheist groups, radio hosts, and vloggers.
- Debate with Ron Barrier at the 2001 Atheist National Convention
- On April 2001 in Orlando, Florida at the American Atheists' National Convention, American Atheist national spokesperson Ron Barrier debated Comfort. Within the debate, Comfort used the banana as an argument for design and proof for God.
- Debate with the Rational Response Squad
- See the main article on this topic: Rational Response Squad debate with Way of the Master
- On May 5, 2007, RRS co-founder Brian Sapient and RRS member Kelly O'Connor participated in a live debate aired on Nightline with Comfort and Kirk Cameron. Comfort and Cameron claimed they were able to show the existence of their god without the use of the Bible and faith.
- Debate with Thunderf00t
- See the main article on this topic: Thunderf00t debates Ray Comfort
- On July 24, 2009, Comfort and YouTuber vlogger Thunderf00t had a recorded debate (eventually they met a second time and had another discussion). There was no moderator or audience, just the two of them sitting down and freely addressing any topic they wished.
- Debate with the Atheist Experience
- On 27 March 2011, Comfort was a call-in guest on The Atheist Experience, with hosts Matt Dillahunty (a former Baptist seminarian turned atheist and founder of Iron Chariots) and Russell Glasser.
- Debate with AronRa
- On September 17th 2012, Comfort debated AronRa on RPRR (Radio Paul's Radio Rants) on the (ridiculously simple) topic: God vs Atheism.
- Debate with Matt Dillahunty
- On 7 February 2014, Comfort and Matt Dillahunty of The Atheist Experience debated the existence of God on the KKMS.FM radio show On the Way with Ridgeway. Owing to Comfort's insistence on preaching rather than actually engaging in debate, Matt avowed after the show never to have anything to do with Comfort ever again.
- Gene Ray — his style is similar to Comfort's, but he manages to make his craziness entertaining
- Pious fraud
- 180, a
"shocking documentary"schlockumentary about abortion.
- WND.com — Publisher of much of Ray's tripe and host of his and Kirk Cameron's college co-ed stalker series, Living Waters.
- Living Waters Productions, Comfort's evangelical shite
- Ray Comfort Food, Comfort's blog
- Ray Comfort, Iron Chariots
- "Long article on Ray Comfort", Atheism Wikia
- THE RAYTRACTORS — RAY COMFORT'S DETRACTORS
- Way of the Master Watchdog, Rational Responders
- "Uncomfortable Questions for Ray Comfort and Believers in Hell", Rational Dreaming
- "Ray Comfort succeeds Ted Haggard as Most Gay Evangelical", Antecessor
- "The Atheist Test"
- Chuck Smith was a student at Life Bible College, founded by Aimee Semple McPherson — a female Pentecostal preacher, faith healer and outspoken anti-evolutionist. McPherson was sued by the families of people who died after the evangelists told them to ditch the medical care they needed. Aimee McPherson died of a presumed accidental sleeping pill overdose.
- 2014, 2013, 2012
- Note that as evolutionary theory would predict, different evolutionary lineages of fish have developed different ways to get oxygen from air. Lungfishes and their relatives (including tetrapods like us humans) have gut-derived lungs. Labyrinth fishes like gouramis have a labyrinth organ. Armored catfishes swallow air and absorb oxygen using the lining of the gut, but haven't developed a special respiratory organ separate from the gut like our lineage. Some Gobies breathe air using the method proposed by Comfort, aeration of the gills, but they are not from the lineage that led to lungs.
- Ray Comfort does it again… by jrminoh (2013) Redditt.
- Wanker of the Day by Scott Lemieux (November 19, 2011) Lawyers, Guns & Money.
- "Banana Man" Ray Comfort Now Wants to Convince You God Designed Coconuts by Hemant Mehta (May 8, 2019) Friendly Atheist.
- Kirk Cameron, From Sitcom Star to Evangelist by Martin Bashir (March 17, 2006) ABC News.
- Comfort, Ray, "The Way of the Master," p. 3, 5
- Living Waters About YouTube.
- Ray Comfort Facebook
- Living Waters / The Way of the Master Facebook
- Christian Evangelist's Book Ranked Bestselling 'Atheist' Item by Katherine T. Phan (Feb 14, 2009 | 8:45 AM) The Christian Post.
- Ray Comfort's Money Machine - The Pay of the Master - B2B by Greycoat's Teapot (Jul 14, 2013) YouTube (archival copy).
- Ray Comfort Wikiquote
- Kirk Cameron's and Ray Comfort's Way of the Master Series Brian A. Thomas.com
- An Interview with Creationist, Filmmaker, and Banana-Enthusiast Ray Comfort by Hemant Mehta (August 20, 2013) Patheos.
- Ray Comfort on The Atheist Experience - Full Debate. (29 March 2011) YouTube ([https://web.archive.org/watch?v=bLA_Nja5kUw archival copy).
- What do I think of Ray Comfort?
- Caniform Carnivore Cladogram Construction by AronRa (Oct 7, 2010) YouTube (archival copy).
- Comfort, Comfort Food, p. 173-174. "The reason that "many 'species to species' transitions are known though they are not as abundant as the general lineages," is that there aren't any. There are no transitional fossils (species to species transitions)."'
- Ray Comfort February 17, 2014 Facebook.
- The School of Biblical Evangelism: 101 Lessons : how to Share Your Faith: "Evolution is a fairy tale for grown ups." quote
- Is your church having a 'Cinderella Sunday': Author says evolution event should be followed by other 'fairytale' celebrations by Bob Unruh (02/10/2012 at 8:08 PM) WND.
- Ray Comfort makes a Fruit Salad, Dispatches From the Culture Wars
- Not Completely Ignorant… July 7, 2010 Atheist Central: Ray Comfort's Blog (archived from October 14, 2011).
- An Interview with Creationist, Filmmaker, and Banana-Enthusiast Ray Comfort by Hemant Mehta (August 20, 2013) Patheos.
- The Defender's Guide for Life's Toughest Questions by Ray Comfort, New Leaf Publishing Group. ISBN 0890516049. page 87.
- Quote# 67928 by Ray Comfort (12/2/2009 4:49:19 AM) Fundies Say the Darndest Things!
- The Evolution of Stupidity July 5, 2010 Atheist Central: Ray Comfort's Blog (archived from March 24, 2012).
- Evolution Vs. God Movie by Living Waters (Aug 6, 2013) YouTube (archival copy).
- Sexes Without Sex December 1, 2008Atheist Central: Ray Comfort's Blog (archived from December 4, 2008).
- Elephantine error from Ray Comfort refutes a similar claim over elephants.
- Ask A Scientist, Biology Archive
- Claim CB350: Sex is too complex for its origin to be explained by evolution. The Talk Origins Archive
- Genesis on Trial April 27, 2011 Atheist Central: Ray Comfort's Blog (archived from May 10, 2011).
- Evolution (Way of the Master) Atheism (Wikia)
- What evolution believes… February 18, 2011 Atheist Central: Ray Comfort's Blog (archived from February 22, 2011).
- Atheists: Stand up for What You Believe April 11, 2011 Atheist Central: Ray Comfort's Blog (archived from 27 Sep 2013 10:20:25 UTC).
- Ray Comfort May 5, 2013 Facebook
- Genesis on Trial April 26, 2011 Atheist Central: Ray Comfort's Blog (archived from April 29, 2011).
- Ray Comfort & Pat Robertson on Evolution by Daniel Florien (February 19, 2009) Patheos.
- From The Origin of Species to the origin of bacterial flagella by Mark J. Pallen & Nicholas J. Matzke (2006) Nature 4:784-790.
- The School of Biblical Evangelism, Lesson 72: Atheist Questions Part 1
- Spontaneous creation of the Universe Ex Nihilo
- Ray Comfort April 26, 2013 Facebook.
- Intelligent Design Vs. Evolution: Letters to an Atheist by Ray Comfort (2006). Bridge-Logos Publishers. ISBN 0882701665.
- Atheist Experience #702 20 Mar 11 Ray Comfort Interview by freetheworldof (Mar 28, 2011) YouTube (archival copy).
- Ray Comfort February 17, 2013 Facebook.
- Iron Chariots definition
- Letters: shockofgod and Ray Comfort Gphhawkins Rationalist Society.
- The School of Biblical Evangelism: 101 Lessons: how to Share Your Faith: lying is prohibited quote
- Parachute analogy Iron Chariots.org
- Ray Comfort quote from God’s Message to the World By Neale Donald Walsch (2015). Jaico Publishing House, ISBN 8184957947.
- Ray Comfort March 22, 2014 Facebook.
- Ray Comfort Apologizes for Saying There’s No Gravity in Space by Hemant Mehta (July 27, 2014) Patheos.
- Ray Comfort, The Defender's Guide for Life's Toughest Questions GoodReads
- What If Everyone On Earth Jumped at Once? by Natalie Wolchover (July 8, 2011 09:50am ET) ''Live Science.
- You Can Lead an Atheist to Evidence, But You Can't Make Him Think, Page 95
- Sexual Repression: The Malady That Considers Itself the Remedy: by Christopher Ryan (April 20, 2010) Psychology Today.
- The case history is from a former Christadelphian but can be generalized to other religious people who try to suppress sex August 5, 2011 Recovering Cultist (archived from 6 Dec 2012 00:15:42 UTC).
- Homosexuality—a Sign of the End of the Age? by Ray Comfort Living Waters.
- Ray Comfort’s Anti-Gay Film Audacity is a Ludicrous Caricature of Self-Righteous Evangelism by Camille Beredjick (June 29, 2015) Patheos.
- Evangelist Ray Comfort: Homosexuality Is a Choice by Jennifer LeClaire (3:00PM EDT 9/1/2015) Charisma News.
- Ray Comfort Explains Aurora Shootings, Dispatches from the Culture Wars
- Connecticut School Shooting… Why??? by Living Waters (Dec 14, 2012) YouTube, just after 3m mark ([https://web.archive.org/web/20160101050119/https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=9GrY96_T5lw archival copy).
- That Ray Comfort meme March 6, 2014 Atheist Forum.
- Ray Comfort December 7, 2014 Facebook.
- A Blogger's Confession by Ray Comfort (March 27, 2008) Comfort Food: Ray Comfort's Blog.
- Words of Comfort: Megaphone March 4, 2013 The Comfort Zone.
- Ray Comfort Does It Again… (c. 2013) reddit/atheism.
- Ray Comfort just called me a liar. by sarahjewel (c. 2013) reddit.
- Mormonism (Way of the Master) Iron Chariots (archived from September 6, 2011).
- Save Yourself Some Pain Living Waters (archived from November 21, 2009).
- The Damnable Heresy of Ray Comfort by David J. Stewart (May 2007) Jesus Is Savior.com
- Ray Comfort claims to find a Cure for Cancer.
- In which Comfort shows he really is a despicable human being
- Kirk Cameron, From Sitcom Star to Evangelist by Martin Bashir (March 17, 2006) ABC News.
- A Strange Name for a Christian Site by Ray Comfort (August 18, 2009) Atheist Central (archived from August 21, 2009).
- Words of Comfort by Ray Comfort (December 17, 2011) Words of Comfort (archived from May 29, 2012).
- Secret Service Seizes Gospel Tracts by Joseph Farah. Saint Louis Metrovoice (originally from the June 3, 2006 on line edition of WorldNetDaily.com).
- Trial currently under way will determine fate of Gospel Tracts banned by Department of Homeland Security (September 4, 2009) Religion News Blog.
- Million Dollar Bill Living Waters.
- Also for sale by Ray Comfort
- Million Dollar Bill Gospel Tracts are Legal, Judge Rules By Nathan Black (Apr 2, 2010 | 10:39 AM) Christian Post.
- PrayerStop.org, about us. Great News Network was formed by Darrel Rundus in 2002. At the time of the Secret Service raid in 2006, Great News Network was heavily involved in spreading Comfort's propaganda. The organization is now known as PrayerStop.org. Retrieved on 20 December 2015.
- Secret Service agents seize thousands of Ray Comfort's Million Dollar Bill gospel tracts by Michael Ireland (June 5, 2006) Worthy Christian News.
- Secret Service agents seize thousands of $1 million bill gospel tracts (07 July, 2006) Christian Examiner.
- Secret Service Agents Seize Ray Comfort Gospel Tracts ("1 million dollar bill") by TheBattman (6/3/2006, 6:54:04 AM) Free Republic.
- 2010 archive of "The $10,000 Offer"
- "If you call any other Christian on this page a ‘bibliophile’ I will ban you." The Daily Dolt
- It couldn't happen to a sleazier guy by PZ Myers (December 13, 2009 7:13 PM) Pharyngula (archived from December 15, 2009).
- Ray Comfort: Plagiarist (November 4, 2009) Answers in Genesis Busted!
- Stealing intellectual property is also theft, see What is intellectual property?.
- Plagiarism and lust. wikia.com. Retrieved on 20 December 2015.
- Nothing Created Everything: The Scientific Impossibility of Atheistic Evolution. Los Angeles: WorldNetDaily. 2009-09-22. p. 90. ISBN 9781935071235
- Bill Maher challenged to intelligent-design debate: Author Ray Comfort says TV satirist too insecure to accept offer (05/10/2006 at 1:00 AM) WND.
- Atheist Experience #702: Ray Comfort Interview by The Atheist Experience ((Mar 29, 2011) YouTube (archival copy).
- AronRa VS Ray Comfort RPRR 9-17-2012
- Matt Dillahunty debates Ray Comfort on AM980 KKMS @raycomfort @Matt_Dillahunty @KKMS by Mavaddat Javid (Feb 10, 2014) YouTube (archival copy).
- Ray Comfort is 180 degrees from reality by theyounghistorian77 (Sat Oct 01, 2011 12:57 am) League of Reason (archived from 24 Dec 2012 02:56:29 UTC). See here for counter-arguments.