Agnostic Vegas Survivor Now A ‘Firm Believer In God’

On Sunday, a man identified as Stephen Craig Paddock unloaded gunfire into the Las Vegas Route 91 Harvest country music festival crowd from a 32nd floor hotel window, killing a confirmed 58 people thus far and injuring at least 400 others. The gunman was found by police dead from an apparent suicide.

Thus far, reports of heroism from concert attendees and brave first responders have flooded the internet. In an interview with CNN, Vegas massacre survivor Taylor Benge told some tales of such heroics, and explained why he, a self-declared agnostic, is now a “firm believer in God.”

“I was agnostic going into that concert and I’m a firm believer in God now,” said Benge on Monday morning. “Because there’s no way that all of that happened and that I made it and I was blessed enough to still be here alive talking to you today.”

Benge also spoke of his brave sister, who risked her own life to protect him from potential gunfire.


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  • lighteredknot

    Yep: Instilled Reverent fear of GOD, can make a drastic change in an individual. Psalms 14:1 The fool hath said in his heart, there is no GOD.

  • Retired Chief Petty Officer

    Another foxhole convert. Welcome to the believers.

  • Carol

    Congratulations! Your life will forever be changed and now get Baptized and join in the followers and lets get you to heaven! God is good ALL the time!

  • mossbergman

    Bill Cosby said in Joking when the ground starts shaking your all gonna look up

  • God must be smiling. It really makes me happy when a non believer becomes a believer. His life will be filled with God’s light from now on. When you don’t have God in your life you walk in darkness, you are never truly happy, you are always afraid. I have met several Atheists in my life and they are almost always negative. The thing that gets me is that they are constantly trying to get rid of a God they claim doesn’t exist. And when you don’t have God in your life you open up the door to Satan.

    • Reb in Texas

      Beautiful response – hope Taylor sees it….God is always there for us…though sometimes it takes special circumstances for us to realize it…

      • JINH

        I agree with this post. God has predestined us to walk a path and in this unusual traumatic event, He spared Taylor’s life who came out publicly to declare his faith in God. Beautiful declaration, new birth, new commitment, our Awesome God!

    • Jorg37

      What nonsense! So-called “godless” people, like Atheists, are generally better behaved and far less prone to crime than so-called believers. The difference is that we atheists don’t need the fear of a god to behave ourselves, nor do we need the promise of godly rewards to be nice to others. It all comes naturally. I speak on behalf of a vast group of non-believing friends and family members in several countries, all well-behaved and successful members of society.

      • wishbone516

        Being well behaved and doing good are not the way to getting into to Heaven when you die. You have to believe in God and accept His gift of salvation: Jesus. Jesus paid the ultimate price for our sins, and salvation is free…but it requires that you believe…

        • Jorg37

          More nonsense! How naïve do you have to be to swallow such BS? That defies all logic and common sense! And, for your information: there is no Heaven or Hell! It is all made up by ancient people trying to outdo each other cooking up unbelievable stories. All religions are hoaxes!

          • wishbone516

            All I can say is that whenever I have called upon Him for help, He has never failed me. There have been at least three times in my life that I was near death and He healed me. I am sorry that you can’t see it. Maybe one day you will feel His presence and that is my hope for you..

          • Jorg37

            I know you mean well, but don’t entertain any hopes for me! I am just fine and have had a very rich and enjoyable life in every respect, been very close to death several times, but been lucky enough to escape without serious injury. Just luck, no divine intervention.

        • JR Robinson

          wishbone516, not to scold you sister, but you can not get into Heaven by behaving and doing good. There are not several ways to ensure eternity in Heaven. There is only one way, and that is through and by Jesus.

          • ARJAY

            JR, isn’t that basically what wishbone said? “Being well behaved and doing good are not the way to getting into to Heaven. . .”. Did you miss the word “NOT” in above quote?

            Did you completely miss her last sentence “Jesus paid the ultimate price for our sins, and salvation is free…but it requires that you believe…”?

            She doesn’t need to be scolded, but maybe you do for not comprehending what she said.

          • JR Robinson

            ARJAY, I believe that maybe her post has been edited. That is not what it initially read.

          • ARJAY

            OK, could have been edited.

      • David Skulstad

        Your two assertions ” don’t need the fear of a god to behave ourselves, nor do we need the promise of godly rewards to be nice to others.” show that you do not understand how and why people of faith, Christians, act and react the way we do. It is not surprising that you cannot understand it though. The only way you can truly comprehend a life lived through faith is to believe in God. I also do not think that there is such a thing as an atheist. You have a god, and a way of believing, but you don’t know what it is or can articulate it. I call it confusion.

        • Jorg37

          For many of us it is logical not to believe in something we know doesn’t exist, and which is nothing but an imagination in some people’s minds. Even in this rather religion-infested country, non-believers amount to about one quarter, increasing steadily. In more progressive countries, like Western and Northern Europe, non-believers amount to 3/4 and more. It is also a fact that with better education, religion tends to disappear. Also, the vast, vast majority of serious scientists, are Atheists. And, yes, I too believe in something: the nature, myself, family and friends, and the good in people.

    • ARJAY

      Yes, how can you get rid of something that doesn’t exist? Now THAT takes REAL faith!

  • Jorg37

    How weak of mind do you have to be to believe such nonsense?! A “God” would save you, while he let so many others perish? Yeah, that makes sense …

    • Keith

      God was not in charge of evil on the earth. That’s Lucifer’s realm, for now.

      • Jorg37

        My goodness, raging superstition! How do you explain that more progressive societies, like the Scandinavian countries, are generally much safer, without people believing in this god nonsense.

    • Lilipatch

      Your statement doesn’t make sense. You can also ask why didn’t he take this survivor, why leave him out, or for that matter – why did anyone live at that concert? This has nothing to do with luck. In my opinion, there is no such thing as coincidences.

      • Jorg37

        What nonsense to believe that a “god” had any hand in this tragic event. Sheer fantasy! And, of course, coincidences played a role: some people happened to be in the line of the bullets, many didn’t. Nothing to do with an imaginary god figure!

        • Lilipatch

          No, I would never say or even think that God had any part in this tragic event. I believe each soul is here on earth for many different reasons unique to that individual soul. It’s too complicated to go into here, but just let me say that you picked your particular parents for a specific purpose, and it’s up to you to figure it out why you’re here by doing some soul searching. The soul picks their time of birth and their time of death.
          Not here to convert – you are free to believe anything you want, but I don’t believe there is a God, I “know” there is a God.

          • Jorg37

            Yes, and you are not alone in this country, riddled with superstition. You cannot “know” there is a god, – there is absolutely no evidence. If in doubt, just read the Bible with an open mind, and you’ll realize it is all made up!

          • JR Robinson

            Jorg37, I have read a lot of your comments here. You mention that Scandinavian are generally safer. I kind of liken that to a little like Saddam and Gomorrah. Satan does have power, and does have control. You tell us to read the Bible, so evidently you have read it or bits of it. So you should be aware of the final outcome at Saddam and Gomorrah. God said enough was enough. God has also advised us through His word of the events leading up to the second coming of Jesus. It really appears that His prophesied words are coming to pass. Have you ever seen or heard of a person being diagnosed with terminal cancer, with lab test and, (for lack of better words) x-ray/MRI film confirming the cancer, but yet that person makes a full recovery, with no cancer being found in either lab tests or x-rays? I have. I have also seen devout Christians with strong faith, praying for healing and believing in that healing, but have passed. I do not know the reasons as to why some people live or why some people die. I do know that when it comes my time to leave this world, that I will go to be with (the) God you say does not exist. I also believe that, at some point in time, even you will bow on one knee and confess and know that God is very real, and that Jesus Christ is his son. You speak of having a fear of God to behave. God does not want anyone to fear/be scared or afraid of his wrath. God has given us His words, but He has also given us all the choice of “free will”. I genuinely feel sad/sorry for you and the many that do not believe, and forgive me if this offends you, but I will continue to pray for you and the others that do not believe. I only wish that you could have experienced the things and witnessed things that I have.

          • Jorg37

            If you have been tricked into believing that something so made-up as the Bible is “God’s word”, then I suggest that you wise up by reading Dan Barker’s “God, the most unpleasant character in all fiction”. Here, the former evangelist and street preacher is using the Bible’s own words to show how ridiculous the whole hoax is, – not to mention how immoral and inhuman the made-up stories are. If there were a God, he would have clamped down with fury on those who have depicted him (or her!) in such an unfavorable light, and made up such horrible stories about him (or her!). If I should ever stoop so low that I knelt for a non-existing fantasy figure, you would know I had gone insane. And, for the record, I’m not implying that all who do, are insane! I’m saying that someone like me, with my background, experience and not the least education, would never in my right mind do such a stupid gesture.

          • JR Robinson

            Not to argue with you, just pointing out again, to your reference as to God clamping down with fury on those who have depicted him/her…… The Point is as I stated. God has given us a choice to believe or not believe. Such made up stories??? I believe that history has proven quite a few of your so called made up stories. As far as kneeling and confessing, just let me know after Jesus’ return, whether you kneel and confess or not. I shall still keep you in my prayers, that you too may have a “thought changing” experience.

  • John Chism

    Having studied many religions and I grew up as Christian too. The thing I have found is that always present is when something happens to a person that they cannot explain how they survived…is they get religion. But around the world the religion they turn to is that that is most prevalent in their cultural upbringing. Thus an Asian will most likely become a Buddest. An East Indian will turn to Hinduism. A Middle Easterner will turn to Islam. A tribesmen in the Amazon will seek a Holyman. And so on. So saying he became religious in a multi-religious country and jumping to a conclusion that he turned to God…which God did he turn to?

    • Jorg37

      Very true, John! And in more “godless” countries, people don’t jump to such silly assumptions.

  • gene smiith

    God is Good… and this young man is fortunate that he encountered a situation early in life that will have a very lasting and wholesome effect on the rest of it. God Bless Him and His Evolution.

  • Barbara Johnson

    Well another person who realizes there is a God. Agnostics just have not been around too many miracles. Why some people died while others lived is a mystery of fate and one I cannot answer you will have to take that up with God next time you pray.

  • Estell Newton

    Good for him. I hope there are others turning to God. Unfortunately, sometimes it takes a tragedy to wake some people up.