Discussing
Religion and the Obama Administration

Jerod Clark

Worried Fellow
January 22, 2009

I don't get why did Rick Warren decide to call Jesus by various names if He alone is the way, the truth and the life. He called him Jeshua (great), but then called Him Isa which is the muslim Jesus who for them never died on the cross and therefore never resurrected. <br>That is not the Jesus I know!!!!! You can't have Him as the only way to any way. He can't be resurrected and have never died and resurrected at the same time.<br> What's going on? Is that people now ask for a NEW RELIGION ORDER? or BELIEF ORDER? Do people really want this type of unity in man and not in Christ. By the way, the Quran was written in the 7th century by a man who had lived among Jews and Christians, perhaps you might find similarities but not the TRUTH!

Marc
January 22, 2009

Faith, in the broadest sense, was a necessary tool for Obama to stand a chance of being elected in the US. I think his priorities will not align much with conservative evangelical Christianity.<br><br>Obama is all about change for the betterment of people's lives. He's fairly young and hopes to really make a difference. If he succeeds in improving things it will send a message to the media-saturated, uncritical world that Bush failed because he was a conservative Christian and so now we have proof that left is good, secular with a sprinkling of faith is good etc.<br><br>Our challenge is therefore to show the world that real social betterment is most effectively achieved when Christian beliefs are put into practice regardless who puts it into practice or what faith they profess.

Marianne
January 22, 2009

I too was so pleased that Obama selected two wonderful men of God to pray over the events of the day and did not restrict that they did not water down their message. I just wonder how Obama reconciles his policy views on abortion and homosexual unions, for instance, with his "Christianity"? Seems to be a disconnect, wouldn't you say?

Mephibashef
January 22, 2009

You are absolutely right about his faith - it is a matter of the heart with God. I remain cautious about his impact because of his liberal approval of gay rights and abortion and worry that executive orders will put in motion "anti hate speech" legislation that will silence the church or the effectiveness of the gospel. His choice of the outwardly homosexual pastor in his inauguration signaled the drift to inclusion of liberal non biblical views. We can only take all of these concerns back to God and pray hard.

Travis
January 22, 2009

I think it will be funny if Obama's administration turns out to be more Christian than the last.<br><br>I remember how excited Christian's were about George W Bush when he was coming up for election. He was this born again Christian who was gonna end abortion, get rid of poverty, and show Christ's love to everyone. Needless to say those things didn't happen. <br><br>I don't believe any one man no matter how powerful his position or walk is going to change the government. Our time would be better spent reaching out and loving those around us, rather than looking for the president to save us.

Jerod
January 22, 2009

@Marianne<br>@ Mephibashef<br><br>I agree with you both. Abortion and gay marriage are going to be big issues when it comes to Obama/Christian relations. I pray that his faith will be stronger than the Democratic platform when it's time for him to deal with these issues. Any strides he's made so far with reaching out to Christians could be lost depending on how he handles these issues.

Drew
January 22, 2009

I have a really hard time reading some of this. I also am not going to pretend to know what is in Obama's heart, but I can say that by his actions (as well as his verbage), I don't know how he can claim to hold to Christian values, but still support the ideas he does. I am going to do a post on my blog about this actually. If any of you actually do not know what Obama believes in regards to abortion and gay marriage, I hope you did not vote. I say that because it shows that you did no research on Obama, which means you likely did little research on McCain. My personal opinion (and I do understand it is just that) is that uninformed people do not belong voting. I pray to that Obama makes the right decisions...but seriously people, take the blinders off!

tx2626
January 22, 2009

Good article. My job as a Christian is to pray for the President of the United States regardless if I voted for him or not. I found it very hard to do that for Clinton and at times for George W. Bush. I have matured over the last 16 years and will pray for the man in the office because God put him there. God is an awesome God and His reasons for doing things is all right with me. May God bless the USA and our President.

Nathan
January 22, 2009

I think faith could really flourish under Obama and am hoping it does.<br><br>I wish I could just once see a conversation about how evangelicals can help affect positive change by working with Obama (or anyone different from them) _without_ mentioning gay rights or abortion. Just once! We all know his stance on these issues. He believes differently than you. I'd like to see us figure out how God can use him to make the world a better place. If God uses him for anything over the next 4 years, then we should be behind that 100% without the obligatory footnote about gays and abortion.

SaintStewart
January 22, 2009

I have to agree with tx. It is our job to support our leaders and pray for them, even if we don't like their policies/beliefs/etc, because we choose to live here. I also agree that since nothing is outside of our Lord's control, that Mr. Obama has a purpose. As to what that is yet, I cannot say. <br><br>I support my new President, but I find it distrubing that he has so many contradictions going on at once. He is a man of many faces. Sure, he says he is a follower of Christ (it't not my call as to if he is or isn't), so I will trust him till he shows otherwise...but I have a problem when he says in his speech that science will "be put back in it's proper place". <br><br>And as to worried fellow's comments - nail on the head. Mr. Warren has been troublesome since the beginning. I have always had a dislike for him, as his version of the Bible is so watered down (he uses a lot of praraphrased bibles), and on top of that, he is very generic with his messages. Christ didn't come to us with a watered down feel good message. He came to us with a spur to action do-or-die message. This business with incorporating other religions in with his faith is just his latest step in leading people awry. Yes, I have had a very firm suspicion/feeling for quite some time now that Mr. Warren has an agenda of leading people down the wrong path. He sounds like one of my wife's friends who incorporates the choice pieces of any religion into her own, and it has grown to the point where her religion cannot be considered any one faith any more - so yes, you can say it - not New Religion Order, but New World Order. New Age. Against God. <br><br>We walk and live in a dark world. Let us continue to bring the Light to it until the very end.

Barbara
January 23, 2009

Anyone who thinks it is ok to kill unborn children is a danger and a Christian should know what God says about this. God says he knew us before we were ever born. God permits only one woman and one man to be considered as a married couple...Obama sees otherwise...I will still pray for Obama - that God will change his heart to come iln line with His...

Adam
January 23, 2009

Sure, religion and faith will play a role in the Obama presidency, but only to the extent that they help bring about social change as defined by President Obama. This is civic religion. I do not expect President Obama to promote faith in Christ, the reality of sin, or the need for a Savior any time soon. I think we need to define terms here. Many Americans subscribe to civic-Christianity, but are still without a Savior. <br><br>Nevertheless, the Lord WILL you Barack Obama and his presidency for His glory, regardless of Obama's decisions, policies, or politics. Of this we should all be sure. The Gospel does not need a government's stamp of approval in order to flourish.

Drew
January 23, 2009

One of the problems I see as a common theme here is the difference between praying for our new President and suporting him whether we agree or not. SaintStewart, it is not a Christians job to support our leaders whether we agree or not. We should pray that Obama makes decisions that are God pleasing. If he doesn't, we are not to stand by and still give him our support. <br><br>For evangelicals Nathan, abortion and gay rights are a huge problem. You can't pretend that someone that holds values like he does on those issues, is going to hold God pleasing attitudes on the other areas of his life. I dont think Bush did a good job holding to conservative spending ideals. Actions speak louder than words...you cant say your a Christian and then go act contrary to Christian believes. Yes, God is the only one that can judge the heart, but I am not judging his heart here. I am judging what the future of our country will be based off of the past actions (or lack of actions) of our new President.

Patrick Lynch
January 23, 2009

I'd rather have an effective president than one who fails constantly but Really, Truly Believes it's okay because he's a Christian.

Simyk
January 23, 2009

I know the only way we can join hands together as christians is to pray fervently for our new president that God would grant him wisdom on issues such as Abortion and Stem Cell research....don't you reckon?? We need to pray that people would become more aware of the consequences if they decide to 'play God'......I can see around me that people are becoming more tolerant of trying to change the course of things that God has set in it's place....I feel saddened by this :-(

SiarlysJenkins
January 23, 2009

I don't see any disconnect. Obama hasn't said that a homosexual union is a marriage, only that gay couples should be able to grant rights to each other regarding visitation in hospitals, property ownership, etc. I for one think that is just fine. Also, remember that nothing any government body does, including the Supreme Court of Massachusetts, is binding on churches. It is only about civil marriage licenses. As to abortion, there are millions of Christians who do not favor restoration of criminal penalties for abortion. I'm one of them. But most of all, these are both tiny tiny issues. Nobody's political integrity, or Christianity, can be judge only, mostly, primarily, or even largely, by these issues alone.

SiarlysJenkins
January 23, 2009

It is not, and never has been, the job of the President of the United States to promote faith in Christ, the reality of sin, or the need for a Savior. That is the job of Christian churches, pastors, and ministry-minded members. Whether the man or woman holding the job of President is or is not a faithful or hypocritical Christian or unbeliever or member of some other faith, promoting faith in Christ is not among the defined duties of the president. So, our president could be a Hindu, and Christian faith could flourish, precisely because it does not, in this nation, depend upon the government.

SiarlysJenkins
January 23, 2009

God said he knew Jeremiah before God formed Jeremiah in the womb, therefore Jeremiah should get over his stage fright about public speaking. Personally, as a Christian, I think it is an act of unspeakable cruelty for a married couple, when the wife contracts rubella while pregnant, to carry the pregnancy to term, knowing the severe damage this will inflict upon the child they grow, nurture and deliver. Take the damaged tissue out, and start over with a healthy baby. (Likewise as to one man and one woman... Jewish tradition teaches that polygamy was never prohibited by God, but that Jews in Europe gave it up to survive among their Roman-influenced Christian neighbors.) My point is not that everyone should agree with me, nor that I agree with polygamy, but that we should be careful about quoting half-baked recollections of Scripture out of context, to tell anyone who understands differently "you are not a Christian." The law in this country is, the parents make the decision, not the state, whether the decision is to carry the pregnancy to term, or to abort, and the parents who make the decision take responsibility for the consequences. All of the above are answerable to God, not to the president, the Supreme Court, social workers, demonstrators, or the local police.

SiarlysJenkins
January 23, 2009

He can claim to hold Christian values because the values he holds, he understands to be Christian. Think how many differences there are between Christian denominations, and between individuals within many denominations. For that matter, both sides in the Civil War proclaimed themselves to be Christian, and as Abraham Lincoln observed, prayed for victory to the same God. Also, Obama can claim to hold Christian values because he has accepted Jesus Christ as his savior, and told Franklin Graham, "for me, he's the only way." Obama has never endorsed either abortion or gay marriage, by the way.

Sherwood MacRae
January 24, 2009

Jesus taught - we must be born again, and for those of us who might remember our infancy, and those of us who have raised children, a young one comes from the womb - seeking, love and where it was discovered, he or she moves on to maturity.<br><br>The role of the parents, the elders, is to extend the kind of love that will promote growth and it is the same kind of love we need to extend to the newcomer - the one who is in our midst to help us grow as well.<br><br>So it is with our new President. He has yet to meet most of us, so we need to be as patient with him as we are with the newborn. Some may think they will have to change too many diapers, but for those of us who have changed many, a word of caution - relax and focus our opinions on shaping ourselves and those closest to us.

Lavrai
January 24, 2009

Has anyone ever read that passage in Isaiah 29:12-14 - "Inasmuch as these people draw near with their mouths and honor Me with their lips, but have removed their hearts far from Me..."<br><br>Or 2vTimothy 3:1But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, 4treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of <br>God— 5having a form of godliness but denying its power. <br><br>How about Matthew 7: 15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? 17 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them.<br><br>Christians can't just take someone at their word! Would we just take a man at his word if he said he was a lion? The difference, of course, we can see with our eyes his human form, but as for the spirit, if it is the Spirit of Truth, for that we must look below the surface. We can't see someone's heart, but we can surely grasp the fruit of their actions and words.<br><br>There are many articles published of interviews Mr. Obama gave that contradicts the Christian faith... primarily and most importantly that there are many ways to heaven. Last I heard, there is only ONE.<br><br>Both Mr. Bush and Mr. Obama express this viewpoint. So they can call themselves Christians all they want -- it's easy to take on a form of godliness. But their fruit appears to be from another tree.<br><br>You can read one of Obama's interview for yourself here: <a href="http://blog.beliefnet.com/stevenwaldman/2008/11/obamas-interview-with-cathleen.html" rel="nofollow">http://blog.beliefnet.com/stev...</a> and here for Mr. Bush: <a href="http://lavrai.com/blogs/2008/12/09/bush-bible-not-literally-true-we-all-pray-to-same-god/" rel="nofollow">http://lavrai.com/blogs/2008/1...</a><br><br>And to answer your question, if President Obama stands on a platform of inclusiveness for his faith (as shown by his inauguration choices) then it appears America is headed down a broad road... and we know where that one leads. But he's the president of a nation made up of various peoples and cultures -- religious and non-religious. He can still represent them all without ushering in a presidency of blood and poor moral values (i.e., funding abortions worldwide and endorsing "gay bishops.") His faith should have taught him that GOD values human life at all stages and that homosexuals are not in the Church.<br>

John
January 24, 2009

SiarlysJenkins, I give you a quote Matthew 22: 37 to 40. Read it please. No one can tell a adult female to have an abortion or not to. We can regulate how it is done, therefore giving the woman the proper medical attention she will need. She would not have to try and do it herself or go to someone who would risk her life in the attempt to abort a child. To abort a child is to kill the child. Do you want to be a part of the death of a child or will you work to show others that for only medical reasons should a child be aborted. From what you have written I have my doubts. We don't know enough about Mr. Obama and only time will tell what he will do according to what he thinks is right. In God's Grace John

MadFederalist
January 24, 2009

Everyone, please take a step back, count to ten, and then compare this unseemly splattering of commentary with Steven Koster's Dec 11 post "What Church for the Obamas?" He noted that liberal columnist Sally Quinn had offered her opinion as to which church the Obama family should attend in DC. Quinn recommended the National Cathedral (Episcopalian) because it’s a pluralistic church, and that’s the religion of pluralistic America—a faith in faith itself, absent of all content. And Barack, as believer-in-chief, should represent our common faith. Koster also cited a response from Jim Skillen that<br><br>"Quinn’s confusion comes from having ignored the most important basis of pluralism that the United States offers. Precisely by distinguishing the political community from many faith communities, the US Constitution opens the public arena to diverse faith communities, all of which are free to be exclusive in their membership while being included on equal terms in American society."<br><br>Now, a little over a month later, everyone wants to discuss whether Obama is a Christian based on this or that doctrine or focus or preoccupation that each person has. The Obama family's choice of church or faith is never going to represent the nation, nor should it. If we picked our president in order to be the symbol of our national faith, then once the president was elected, we should all accept his faith as our own. That's backwards of course: we don't have to accept the president's faith as ours, nor do he or his family have to accept ours as his.<br><br>Most of us here seem to be Protestants. For a little perspective, let's look at how this would play out for a Roman Catholic. I won't type it all here. Anyone interested, check out what I previously posted at <a href="http://www.madfederalist.blogspot.com" rel="nofollow">www.madfederalist.blogspot.com</a> concerning the dilemmas of Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden.

Angie
January 24, 2009

How can anyone, including, Barack Hussein Obama, say he is a Christian. Have we all gone mad with the Presidential fever or what? Read the word of God and see, if what Obama says and does with the decisions he makes along with his expressions on his "faith" , line up with the word of God. To qualify a Christian, we must, agree, in all aspects of the Bible as the written word of God. The Bible says, abortion is murder, homesexuality is an abomination, Obama says the opposite, all the while saying he is a Christian. Last note: Just because you live in a garage, doesnt make you into a car" He is Chritian in name only, that wont get him into Heaven, afterall we are not voted into Heaven, its not the White House. <br>God bless and help him, and us. <br>

David Cuffaro
January 25, 2009

So far, the new president has demonstrated a lack of belief through his quietly signing a reversal in abortion policy - he's shown his true liberal beliefs in abortion through the reversal of non-support for international groups who use abortion as a method of birth control. He's also quickly signed executive orders closing down a key prison terrorist camp without first making arrangments to relocate the inmates. These first actions do not bode well for the direction he will take the U.S. He's also begun appointing cabinet members who he's not properlty vetted - ie Treasury - a man who cheated on taxes and only calls it an oversight or mistake - the message is clear, do as I say not as I do. I fear the change he's talked so much about is far to the left and will further drag this nation down - we're headed in the direction of the Roman Empire. Just look around this country - we're a modern day Sodom &amp; Gomorah with little hope for a return to true Christian values - what the nation needs is radical change and a turn back to the Lord as stated in 2 Chronicles 7:14 not more of the same from or leaders.

GS
January 25, 2009

Obama has changed his heart after he realized that he needs God's help to effectively lead our country.<br><br>Praise God

Carr
January 25, 2009

Well said, Angie!

Saved By Grace
January 25, 2009

My prayer is that God will bless our nation because of faithful and God fearing Christians and not because of some statement Obama made that he is a Christian for his own political success. God will judge him and he only used Rick Warren to pacify the Evangelical Christians.

SiarlysJenkins
January 25, 2009

One of my all time favorites. It renders most of this discussion moot. Indeed, I would consider anyone a Christian who makes a good-faith attempt to adhere to the two commandments upon which, Jesus said, hang all the law and the prophets. Everyone can quibble about what this or that verse in "the Word of God" means, or which translation got it right (most European translations got the Hebrew and Aramaic of the Old Testament wrong in various ways). But Matthew 22: 37-40, yes, that defines what it means to be a follower of Jesus, in his own unmistakable words.<br><br>I don't connect it particularly to abortion, more than to any other action that humans may or may not commit, but I agree that no one can tell an adult female to have an abortion or not to, and that each woman should be provided the proper medical attention she will need. I don't think President Obama has ever said or done otherwise. For myself, you are correct that I do not consider what a pregnant woman carries to be a child at every stage. I also respect the right of any pregnant woman to decide that what she carries IS a child, and act accordingly. There are no good answers, but I believe intervention by The State should be based on whether the fetus, if removed from the mother's womb, can survive on its own without artificial breathing equipment. For the rest, proclaim what you believe, and try to persuade others to agree and act on that agreement.

Adam
January 25, 2009

@SiarlysJenkins I am struggling to discern the tone of your reply. I certainly hope you don't think that I was implying that it was the President's job to promote faith in Christ. I was merely answering the posed questions and stating the obvious: that Obama will not be promoting a faith in Christ, though he and others may make an appeal to religion or faith in order to achieve certain ends. I also stated that "the Gospel does not need a Government's stamp of approval to flourish."

dovey†ove
January 26, 2009

Angel gave Elijah food so Obama can get favor if he's following God thru Christ for the provision of the land. Hopefully after recently leaving that racist bias Rev. Wright's church, he's a new man.

Drew
January 26, 2009

@Sherwood MacRae<br><br>I am sorry Sherwood, but that is one of the most foolish things I have ever heard from anyone. I am not going accept the idea that we need to look at a new president like we do a newborn. Wow...seriously!

Rich
January 26, 2009

AMEN this makes more sence then anything I've read on this blog sofar!

Adam
January 27, 2009

I found it ironic that I happened upon this blog the day after Obama announced his full moral and FINANCIAL support for abortion programs worldwide.<br><br>This "Christian" signed papers to fund abortion programs here and even outside our own country! How can anyone defend his Christainity despite all this?<br><br>I know this blog and most of the comments were made before that announcement, but those defending him now have nothing to stand on. God help us.

Steve
January 27, 2009

For a huge section of conservative Christians, myself included, these are not "tiny tiny" issues - particularly the abortion issue. They are central to the decline of our society as a God fearing, God respecting republic. I'm not attempting to bait you into a pro-choice / pro-life debate, but I am asking any person who claims Jesus Christ as their savior to examine their stance on the subject. God forgive us all.

Llawhsoj
January 27, 2009

p.s. that last comment is in regard to angie. Apparently my browser is having issues today...

Llawhsoj
January 27, 2009

Two quick thoughts:<br><br>1) I find it interesting that wearing clothing of mixed fibers is also an abomination. That's the one I find gives me the problem (ahh I do love my cotton/poly blends), not so much the homosexuality one, it's the fibers.<br><br>2) Did I fall asleep in church or seminary where we are given the ability to see where people ultimately wind up? That sure could have come in useful in the past but I'm glad angie's gift of ultimate determination is going strong.

SiarlysJenkins
January 27, 2009

Thanks for your note. I have found myself in the same position on other topics, uncertain if someone was opposing what I had posted, when I found much to agree on in theirs. I think perhaps we are all off on the wrong track here. Jerod posed the question, "Will faith flourish under an Obama presidency?" Most comments have narrowed that down to "Is Obama a Christian?" That is, as you suggest, not the point at all. When Alexis de Toqueville wrote his famous journal on the new United States of America, he asked many clergy of many denominations why churches flourished here, much more than in Europe. They all responded, the separation of churches from the state. Not being bound to any political leader or program, churches, faith, worship could flourish on its own merit. I see that Obama recognizes that people's faith has an essential role in our nation's life, without making any doctrine a cornerstone of government. His personal faith may not be the same as any person posting here, but it is his faith, and we each have ours, and we each have a direct line to God.

SiarlysJenkins
January 27, 2009

Sure I do. What Obama signed is not funding for abortion, at home or abroad. He rescinded a presidential order, which prohibited funding to any organization for any purpose, if the organization has, as part of its program, provision of any family planning services, including, but not limited to, abortion. Congress has not allocated any money to directly fund abortions. But even a maternal and child nutrition program run by any group which also provided family planning counseling would have been denied under the old order. I love babies, and I am pro-choice, so I applaud the president's decision. Although those who have posted that abortion and gay marriage are touchstone issues of Christianity, have every right to hold that position, I consider them two among many considerations. Incidentally, I do not believe in redefining marriage as anything other than the union of a man and a woman, certainly not by jury-rigged judicial logic, but I don't automatically excommunicate any Christian who does. They may be wrong, but they are not automatically non-Christian because of that.

Robin
January 28, 2009

Well said. I totally agree - to be honest I was getting a little sick to my stomach reading all the other posts in support of him and his "Christianity".

Miller
January 28, 2009

The debate regarding Obama's faith has become an ongoing contention regarding a man's personal convictions and beliefs. The bible says that everyone that proclaims Christ is not truly a follower of him. Paul the apostle also teaches that this life is seen in a distorted image, and the arrival of the savior will clear our vision and bring all things to light. The greater majority of us don't know Pres. Obama's personal life. Thus, it is almost impossible to judge a man who's speaks through the limitations of his political affiliation. If we realize the world's authority is and must become more and more corrupt, we will spend far less time scrutinizing those in leadership positions. Faith is individual, unity comes with love. "The world will know that you are my followers if you love one another", says the Lord of Hosts. Less judgement, mercy rules over judgement, more love...............

Ryan
January 28, 2009

I find it interesting that so many seem to believe that President Obama, in order to prove his Christian faith, must do his best to make Christian beliefs into law. How preposterous!<br><br>The two major issues that have been brought up, over and over, regarding President Obama's faith, are abortion and gay marriage. It is my opinion that, on these issues, he is making decisions based on equal rights and freedoms--not Biblical mandates. Which (again, in my opinion) is exactly what he should do. He is our President, not a religious leader.<br><br>It is possible to personally believe that abortion is wrong AND to believe that a woman should have the right to make that choice. Likewise, it is perfectly possible to believe that homosexuality is a sin AND to believe that homosexual couples should have equal rights under the law. <br><br>I do not agree with all the stances that President Obama has taken, but I also do not believe that it is his responsibility, as a self-proclaimed Christian, to enact Christianity as law. <br><br>Some may argue to the contrary, but the truth is that the United States is not, has never been, and never will be, a truly "Christian" nation. And this is a good thing! Were our government as intimately intertwined with the church as many seem to wish it were, would we truly have the freedom to worship God at all?<br><br>So in response to the question posed in Jerod's post, I do believe that faith will flourish under Obama's presidency--if we let it. If we look beyond tiny squabbles and get past the small-minded dogma that has seemed so prevalent for the last eight years. There are so many things happening in the world that Christians should care about beyond the legality of abortion or gay marriage.<br><br>Do I believe that President Obama will invite the faith community to play a vital role in creating social change? I certainly hope so, but that remains to be seen. <br><br>Do I pray that God will grant him wisdom as he makes decisions? Yes. <br><br>But do I wish to see him enact more Christian laws? No. Enacting religious laws that happen to agree with my beliefs isn't any better than enacting religious laws that I disagree with. <br><br><br><br>

Drew
January 29, 2009

Ok, so lets look past the abortion and gay marriage idea. What about the church President Obama attended? I do not have the time to go into depth right now, but the vile speach that was to often part of sermons is what I find to be obsurd. Do you see Christ speaking that filth to his deciples or anyone else? <br><br>We are not judging Obama, but we do have the right to look at his backround and see how authentic he is. That is what this is about...not whether he supports gay marriage or not. If we wanted to talk straight politics, we could post ideas elsewhere, but we want to look at these ideas from a Christian perspective. <br><br>Finally, there is nothing wrong with wanting the government to be run by a Christian that will hold to Christian values and use that in all his decisions. This country was founded by God fearing people...and we keep moving further and further away from those founding Christian principles.

Mel
January 29, 2009

Well said Ryan. I don't want my country telling me how to worship no more than I want my church telling me who to vote for. Thank you founding fathers for the separation of church and state. <br><br>President Bush used his "Christianity" to get elected. But his policies on the environment, the two wars, and poverty are not inline with scripture at all but Christians don't seem to be bothered by that.

SiarlysJenkins
January 29, 2009

According to John Piper,<br><a href="http://www.desiringgod.org/ResourceLibrary/Sermons/ByDate/2005/211_Subjection_to_God_and_Subjection_to_the_State_Part_1/" rel="nofollow">http://www.desiringgod.org/Res...</a><br>the Declaration of Independence was written by Deists, not by Christians, and this is evident in its language. There is a lot wrong with wanting the government to be run by a Christian. There is nothing wrong with saying, I am a Christian, what are my values, how should they be reflected in my vote, what candidate best represents those values. A former church sister who voted for Obama blogged that her preference would be Bobby Jindahl. He is a Roman Catholic now, but what if he was a Hindu? And should a Protestant vote for an RC? Oh yeah, they settled that in West Virginia in 1960.<br><br>I spent some hours viewing U-tube clips of sermons at Trinity United Church of Christ, and I found little to disagree with, nothing vile. A lot of it was straight from Christ. I found a good deal to object to when Rev. Jeremiah Wright grabbed the limelight that the U-tube broadcasts afforded him, and started talking some real nonsense. That was about the time Obama broke ties with him. No matter how long you sat in a pew every Sunday, nobody is responsible for their pastor's speech, least of all people in office. Obama is accountable for what he does, not who he listened to in the past. We already did the looking into his background to see how authentic he is. Its called an election. In the final round, 53% of us found him worthy, and 47% would rather have had someone else. He knows that -- he's mentioned openly that 47% wanted someone else. That is a positive difference in understanding "mandate" compared to his predecessor.

Nathan
January 29, 2009

i have no problem with rick warren calling jesus differant names. we are a nation based on faith, and he was sharing his. we need people to know what we stand for. a muslim knows jesus, a jew knows jesus, a siek, a hindu, they all know about jesus. he was showing them who he was praying to, and what he believed. america needs that...

Romayn
January 29, 2009

What a terribly "cruel" thing to say "take the damaged tissue out". Have you ever had a personal relationship with a Human Being who was a "rubella baby". These are human beings with immeasurable value for whom Christ died. They laugh, love, learn and are loved by their parents just as their typically developing children are. Why on earth would you refer to them as damaged tissue? Remember "...whatever you do unto the least of these you do unto Me"?

Romayn
January 29, 2009

In his autobiography he says he does not believe in a single truth (with regard to faith and religion). He says that he does not know where we go when we die. These are the 2 hallmarks of the saved: belief that Christ is the only FOR ALL mankind (not just self and others choose their diety of choice) and assurance of where they will spend eternity. I believed he was a Christian too until I read his own words on the matter. He like many has been decieved and created a God in his own image instead of complete to surrender to the God in whose image he has been made.

Romayn
January 30, 2009

Our president would disagree with your belief in not putting to death viable "fetuses". Late term abortions consist of natural live births before the child is put to death. This is becuase the child is resiliant enough to resist invitro abortafacients and would be wounded but not die. Obama has committed to Federally overturn bans on late term abortion. The states would no longer have a say in the matter.

Drew
January 30, 2009

And a quick follow up...everything is wrong about not having Christian values and ideas. The Lord wants to present in everything we do. How can claim he is in one area of your life and then exclude him for another. It doesn't work that way!

SiarlysJenkins
January 30, 2009

A rabbi I often check with on the original meaning of Old Testament verses recounted that his wife was shopping in December when a woman in the check-out line wished her a Merry Christmas. She replied that she is Jewish and doesn't celebrate the holiday. The woman replied "Oh, that's OK, as long as you're a good Christian." The point is, while a Christian should indeed have Christian values in every area of their life, our Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, fellow citizens do not have Christian values, they have Jewish, Muslim, Hindu and Buddhist values. They are all Americans. I might well find that in the part of my life called voting, a candidate of any of the above faiths had the requisite values to be president, although not to be my pastor. I might well prefer any of the above to a self-professed Christian whose values were different from mine. The rabbi would certainly agree that Adonai (the Lord) wants to be present in everything we do... but he would not invoke the name of Jesus. Incidentally, this rabbi is a Republican. I seldom agree with him on politics.

BornToBeAlive
January 31, 2009

I was born with Muscular Dystrophy. In case you don't know what that is, it's a degenerative wasting of the muscles until you are incapable to move, speak or breathe. I am not 'damaged' but a human being! I think for myself and tell others what I need done. Children are not born 'damaged' as you stated and they are not 'garbage' to be thrown out they are living breathing human beings!! Thankfully, my parents thoughts were not like yours I believe they made an intelligent choice in giving me life. I love life and is loved by everyone around me. Yes. I typed and thought this up with my own my mind, not bad for someone you consider damaged, hey?!!

Michelle
January 31, 2009

I agree, we as christians not only need to examine the subject, we as christians need our hearts examined daily. for it is written "for EVERYONE who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light, for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But, whoeever lives by( PRACTICES )the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God(John 3:20-21). Any evil can be judged and will be judged. God is the judge and all you have to do is ask God, who is pure and Holy if it is allright with Him to murder babies FOR ANY REASON and allow homosexual behavior. No I am not going to throw stones, I would get them thrown back at me, I am not stupid! That is why I am talking about the sin being judged, not the sinner. I don't get to judge the person, that is Gods place, if He wants too or not. But, I will stand with God against the sin, and we should not condone such behavior that we know is WRONG. His word said so, not mine. I know when it is all said and done God will deal with it.We as christians don't have to get worked up about it. We don't know what is going on in these peoples lives, only God does,that is why He is the judge,not us. His son died for them like He did for you and I. He loves them too. Now, are part is simple, all God wants us to do is pray for them and show love, but that is not saying we agree with or condone that live style.We are to love people where ever they are in their lives. And to tell the thruth in love. Don't deny the thruth, you know, ANY part of the gospel. God is pretty firm about how He feels about these two subjects, and that is why there is a spiritual warfare going on about this, It is not against flesh and blood.The devil knows how much God hates sin. Remember, it is sin that God hates, not the sinner.Otherwise, He would hate you and me. Lets start praying for all sinners, maybe they will get saved and lets pray for each other, we need it too to resist all evil temptations, more praying, less talking. Maybe we will be able to be used by God more to minister to them, but He can't use us if we are to busy condeming them to hell. Come on, how often do we try to go out and reach them, we just sit back and condemn them and get all worked up and talk about them, about how wrong that is. Have you ever had a heart to heart talk to people who practice sinful behavior. I challenge you to try it, pray to God first. Let's put an end to spending so much time debating, we don't have any energy left to go tell them that Jesus loves them and wants to heal thier hearts that is what a true christian is all about .Spend that energy going out and DOing SOMETHING FOR GODS PEOPLE. Not arguing. You will have great joy! Sorry Steve, I just took off on your wagon!

SiarlysJenkins
January 31, 2009

I'm afraid you are wrong about both the president, his voting record, and the procedure sometimes called "partial birth abortion." The hullaballoo about this procedure is one of the mostly deliberately misleading, manipulative, corrupt, I might even say evil, political manipulations I have seen in a long time. Consider that the Constitution of the United States of America, as expounded by our nation's Supreme Court, leaves states entirely free to prohibit third trimester abortions. The only exceptions are to save the life or preserve the health of the mother. (As to the mother's life, I fully support the exception; The State has no business requiring a woman to lay down her life to save the baby. There has been some abuse of "the health of the mother," and it needs a clear definition. Incidentally, I respect the right of any woman to CHOOSE to risk her own life to save her baby -- if that is her free and voluntary desire, not even her husband, much less the local chapter of NOW, has any right to say otherwise.)<br><br>By its very nature, partial birth abortion can ONLY be performed at the very end of the third trimester. It is not applicable during the second or third trimesters. Therefore, it is already illegal, unless the mother's life (or health) are in danger. IF the mother's life is in danger, then, tragically, the baby (and at that point I have no doubt it is a baby) will be killed to save the mother. What difference does it make which procedure is used? It should be done swiftly to minimize pain, period. Otherwise, passing laws to prohibit a specific procedure are redundant, ANY procedure would be a criminal violation. Obama has recognized that throughout his legislative career and, mindful of the manipulative intent behind the campaigns for this redundant legislation, voted against it. That is to his credit.

SiarlysJenkins
January 31, 2009

My dear brother in Christ, you are talking apples and oranges. When a baby has been delivered, nurtured, raised, and grown to childhood, adolescence, adulthood, it is definitely NOT mere damaged tissue. They are damaged human beings. I don't use damaged as an epithet, but if I can see, and another person cannot, because the cells that would have become eyes were ravaged by an infectious disease in utero, they are damaged. They may be a good friend, a brother or sister in Christ, but if an angel offered them restoration of sight, as a miracle gift from God, I have no doubt they would gratefully accept. Ditto for all kinds of other damage.<br><br>There was an article in TIME about children with relatively mild cases of Down's Syndrome who, with some matchmaking help from their mothers, had decided to marry. The bride asked her mother, if we have babies, will they have Down's Syndrome too. The mother truthfully said yes. The bride, after some tears, decided to have her tubes tied. She knew, as no-one else could, how difficult her life had been. While she was making the best of it, she resolved not to bring into the world a baby with the same difficulties. I applaud her courage and empathy.<br><br>One reason rubella is so much more devastating during pregnancy is precisely that the life growing within the mother is incomplete, undeveloped, and does not yet have fully developed faculties, so that the destruction wreaked by the infection may have more dire and irreversible consequences. I had rubella, measles, chicken pox, mumps, as a child, some years out of the womb, but it was merely a painful episode from which I recovered. I repeat, if rubella has damaged the tissues in an early stage of pregnancy, I would without hesitation remove the damaged tissue.

SiarlysJenkins
January 31, 2009

Perhaps you also have created a God in your own image. You no doubt read the Bible, but so do I. I find in Matthew 25, starting at the 31st verse, that many who profess faith in Christ will be sent to the right, with the goats, and many who never knew Christ will be sent to the left, to receive the reward prepared for them from the foundation of the world. There are self-professed Christians who read those verses differently, but I am confident that many Muslims, Jews, Buddhists, maybe a few atheists, will be with us in heaven. I believe two hallmarks of the saved are defined by what Jesus said were the two commandments on which hang "all the law and the prophets." And Jesus was quoting Hillel. I find Obama's actual words much closer to Jesus than yours. But that's just my opinion. God will judge, in the manner God chooses, in God's own time. Neither you nor I will have the final say.

Romayn
February 1, 2009

I was in no way intending to make my words sound close to Jesus and of course I do not want to have final say of such matters. But, no where in God's word does he say that those who reject him shall spend eternity with Him. The way to salvation is made clear in God's word.

SiarlysJenkins
February 1, 2009

It appears that BornToBeAlive is sort of responding to my response to Romayn, which is no longer visible, or maybe hasn't seen it, I can't tell which. Perhaps the moderators could straighten that out. I know a very nice married couple who both have muscular dystrophy, and a few others with the same condition. Neither they nor you are damaged tissue, nor is muscular dystrophy caused by bacterial or viral infection. But let's be real: anyone with a permanent disability is indeed "damaged" in the objective sense. It doesn't make anyone less of a human being. I note however that a cognitive disability, as distinct from a physical one, may in fact damage one's ability to make independent decisions. That's why caretakers are liable if they even allow people with serious cognitive disabilities to make potentially self destructive decisions for themselves. There are no simple slogans which cover all this ground.

Lee
February 1, 2009

religion &amp; Obama . . . .<br>When we the followers of Jesus the Christ / Messiah, are told to pray for our Leaders / the<br>President, Senators, Governors etc. we are not to pray for there success as a leader.<br>We are Not to pray that they get what they want or what we went, We are to Pray that all of<br>there actions and deeds are in line with what GOD wants.<br>We are to follow what Jesus said and tell others about who Jesus was - why He came<br>to Earth from Heaven - why he let Himself be killed on a cross - How and why he was raised/resurrected from the dead / grave and that He Jesus the Christ created our world<br>and all that is in it. As part of the God head - Father / Son / &amp; Holley Sprite - our Life, our DNA<br>our world would NOT just happen it was Created.<br>In Matthew 10 : 32 &amp; 33 it says -<br>32-" Whosoever therefore shall confess me (Jesus) before men, him will I (Jesus) confess also before My Father which is in Heaven."<br>33-" BUT whosoever shall deny Me (Jesus) before men, him will I (Jesus) also deny before My Father (GOD) which is in Heaven."<br>And in Romans : 10 - 9 &amp; 10 it says -<br>9- "that if thou (you) shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus And believe in thine (your) hart that GOD hath raised him from the Dead. thou (you) shalt be saved."<br>10- "For with the hart man believeth unto righteousness; and with mouth confession is made unto (your) salvation."<br>and in Romans 12 : 1 &amp; 2 it says -<br>1- "I Jesus BESEECH you therefore brethren ( followers of Jesus teaching ), by the mercies of GOD, that ye (you) present your bodies a Living Sacrifice, Holly, acceptable unto GOD,<br>which is your reasonable service."<br>2- And be Not conformed to this world: but be ye (you) transformed by the renewing of your<br>mind, that ye (you) may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of GOD."<br><br>We are Not to pray for or encourage people with Bad intentions that will hurt our USA or anyone that lives in our country or any other country. That goes for all humans of any age,<br>pre-born to old informed people.<br><br>We all need to Pray fervently that GODS will be done. and that all of our leaders will become followers of our Lord and Savior Jesus the Christ.

Drew
February 2, 2009

Jesus condemned the Pharisees for being careful to appear righteous on the outside, while inside they were full of greed and wickedness. Sounds like many politicians...but this really does sum up President Obama and his party. The Pharisees were a political and social movement and used faith and their religious responsibilities to better themselves or make themselves look better...sound familiar?

SiarlysJenkins
February 2, 2009

Nowhere in God's word? I cited the Biblical basis for my statement. In the hands of mere humans, the word of God is clear as mud, because we ALL impose our own preconceived notions on what we find, and, if it is the complete and perfect word of God, then none of us could hold even a tiny fraction in our own minds. I don't ask you to abandon what you found in God's word, it is obviously good for your individual relationship with God, but what God has for me is for me.

SiarlysJenkins
February 2, 2009

Name calling is easy, and applying a 2000-year old name like Pharisees is easier. Personally, I thought George W. Bush and all the pastors who told their flock that voting for him was the Christian thing to do were Pharisees, for exactly the reason you cite here. But, many Christians disagree, so let's just calm down on the epithets. Jesus did not mention either George W. Bush or Barack Obama anywhere in the Bible. By the way, the most conservative of Jewish rabbis proudly proclaim themselves to be direct descendants of the Pharisees, and mean that in the positive, although more liberal Jewish spokespeople don't seem to speak that way.

SiarlysJenkins
February 2, 2009

Not bad at all. To offer congratulations for such an accomplishment would be patronizing, but you have every right to be proud of it. Somehow, my reply to the rest of what you offered fell a few spaces down the column. Hope you can find it. Good luck and long life to you.

Jerod
February 2, 2009

It seems we've talked this one out and strayed a little off topic. I'm going to go ahead and close commenting for now. I'm sure we'll have plenty of time to talk politics in the future.

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