A Scary Scenario

Just read that some 300 evangelical pastors recently convened in Florida to learn how to adapt their preaching and outreach skills for the pursuit of political office. Their goal?

To mobilize at least 1,000 evangelical Christian pastors to seek government office in order to promote conservative and traditional biblical values!

You’ll never guess who gave the keynote address … none other than Mike Huckabee.

The training was opened with this prayer: “Lord, here we are, a nation founded for the advancement of the Christian faith in the glory of God.” (Wow! He must not have read his history books.)

While I doubt such a scenario will ever occur, as a non-believer, it scares the living sh__ out of me that the Christian majority might actually rise up and make it happen.

Can you imagine living a life where someone else dictates how you should behave? That you might actually be forced to attend church and to worship Jesus? That your personal rights and opinions would be dictated by “the church?” That abortion, women’s rights, same-sex relationships, and other human rights might be removed because they aren’t based on “biblical values?”

OMG, it makes my blood run cold.

One person commented this about the article: “If Church pastors are going to promote ‘politics-from-the-pulpit’, then let’s start a movement to place a tax on every penny they take in.” 

And I say, Amen/A-women to that!

Religion in Politics – The Ongoing Battle

religion

The following is the introduction to an article written by Rev. Howard Bess on ConsortiumNews.com:

Though the United States has a tradition of separating church and state, the 2012 presidential campaign may test the limits of that tolerance. Not only do some Republicans continue to question Barack Obama’s Christianity, but GOP front-runner Mitt Romney is a Mormon and other contenders, such as Sarah Palin, are Christian fundamentalists.

In my opinion (and I don’t think I’m alone in this), politics and religion do not mix! Religion (worship of one’s god in whatever form desired) belongs in a church, temple, or other religious edifice. It DOES NOT belong in politics. NO person, no matter what their faith or political affiliation, has the right to push their particular theology onto the American people.

Issues such as pro-life (anti-abortion), gay marriage, family values, or any other moral concern are individual matters and should NEVER be part of politics. Good grief! Every person that votes is considered an adult — and adults can think for themselves. We don’t need or want someone else forcing us to live according to their beliefs.

I admit, I used to be very conservative in my beliefs and strongly supported “born again” presidents such as Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, and George W. Bush for their unwavering stand for Christianity. But I’ve changed. I guess I became an adult.

Contrary to what many, many people believe, this country is not a “Christian Nation” (see this article). Even though Fundamentalist Christians would like the American public to believe the so-called founding fathers intended to establish this country on “biblical principles,” history simply does not support this view. The original leaders of our nation were not Bible-believing Christians; they were Deists.

An individual (docfloss) contributed what I believe was a very thoughtful comment to the article by Rev. Bess (referenced at the beginning of this posting). I urge you to read it.

So What if President Obama is Muslim?

There is a video making the rounds via email that totally disgusts me.  It is about President Obama and his Muslim background and is clearly an attempt by the video producers to show him in a negative light by using soundbites and images to promote their personal ideology.

If you haven’t seen it, the link is at the bottom of this posting.

Ever since he took office, President Obama has been trying to get the American people to think positively of the Muslin people and of the Islamic faith. He wants us to stop focusing on the Muslim extremists and realize there are good people in Iran (and other Muslin countries) just as there are in other nations of the world. He says himself that he is trying to fight the negative stereotypes that the American people have of Muslim people.

During WW2, people did the same thing they’re doing today — they condemned every German and Japanese person just because of the actions the governments of these countries took against the U.S. Were all the people bad? No. Surely we know by now there are bad apples in every barrel. Or do we?

Obama has never denied his Muslim background. Would we prefer that he did … and then find out about it later? How would that have set with the American people? Just because he chooses to honor his background rather than deny it and cast it in a bad light, certain people castigate him and call him disloyal to the U.S.

Towards the end of the video, Obama makes the statement that America is not and never will be at war with Islam. He has made it clear in other speeches that we are, however, at war with the extremists and jihadists who want to destroy America.

President Obama once made the comment that we are not a Christian (or a Jewish or a Muslim) nation and many people went ballistic! How dare he! What they failed to hear was his next statement: “We consider ourselves a nation of citizens who are bound by ideals and a set of values.”

What is often forgotten — or deliberately overlooked — is that our Constitution does NOT say we are a Christian nation. On the contrary, our forefathers wanted to make it clear that each of us has the right to practice any religion of our choice. (Read the First Amendment — and while you’re at it, read about the religious background of the founders of the Constitution.)

This video is just one more example of individuals trying to whip people into a frenzy and add to the already-present discord and strife in our country. It does nothing but breed fanaticism and an ongoing spiral of hate, fear, and reprisals.

Finally, I find it interesting that those who denounce President Obama’s Muslim background often claim to be Christians … yet they overlook one of the greatest commandments ever uttered by their Leader  … love your neighbor as yourself.

Here is the link to the video.