Recently Mr. Obama attended an event in New Mexico where a supporter asked him a question about his faith. Mr. Obama answered; he wants to be clear after all.
He was asked ‘why he is a Christian’. His response? “I came to my Christian faith later in life and it was because the precepts of Jesus Christ spoke to me in terms of the kind of life that I would want to lead — being my brothers’ and sisters’ keeper, treating others as they would treat me. (He prays daily to) see God in other people and do our best to help them find their own grace. …We have Jews, Muslims, Hindus, atheists, agnostics, Buddhists, and that their own path to grace is one that we have to revere and respect as much as our own. And that’s part of what makes this country what it is. … ” Now, he mentions Christ dying for his sins and that we’re flawed, even humility, and that’s good, but taken with the whole response, it’s lukewarm water.
Sorry, but the more he opens his mouth and speaks about his faith, the more I am convinced that he is either a deluded fool, or an outright liar. If he truly does believe he’s a Christian, the beliefs he’s been taught run contrary to what I know of orthodox Christian beliefs – more so, what someone who professes to be a Christian would say when asked/pressed about their faith. Choice?! The debate about will, between Arminianism and Calvinism continues, but it’s a tricky path saying ‘I chose my faith.’ The more he talks, the more he muddies things up. A fond phrase of Mr. Obama’s is “Let me be clear,” yet on matters of faith he is anything but that.
Instead, what I see is social justice, black liberation theology and some universalism. He makes no mention of his depravity, but of his sin as mere ‘flaw’ and need for salvation, of brokenness. No mention of Jesus being The Only Way, merely, ‘it works for me’. No mention of assurance, of surety in faith by salvation. No mention of the sovereignty of God, but plenty of discussion about free will and grace. Yes, we are saved by grace, but it’s quite clear that Mr. Obama’s understanding about grace and salvation is skewed to put it mildly. The idea he speaks of, that a Muslim or a Hindu and especially an atheist will find grace on their own path? That’s universalism, that’s relativism “Christianized”.
It’s understandable that a politician walks a fine line, not wishing to offend people, but the Cross of Christ is offensive; it is meant to be! Furthermore, you can stand firm in your faith, and be tolerant to non-Christians without giving ground. Yes, Muslims have a right to believe, worship and build where and how they’d like within the law, but that doesn’t mean you water down the Bible to come off “good” for people. You don’t have to say that you believe Muslims are going to Hell, but you can say, “Christ is my Lord and Savior. I realized my need for Him, and that, thru Him only, could I find salvation, peace and real happiness. Others are free to believe as they wish, but I do hope and pray that they will come to find the real hope and peace that I found.”
Instead Mr. Obama focuses on works. That’s social gospel, liberation theology, heresy. We are not saved by our works. Either Mr. Obama has spent time truly studying and investigating what he believes and why, or he has fully drunk the kool-aid because it fits his deeper narrative and ideologies. I’ll say it again. Mr. Obama is not a Christian by his own words. He is not a Muslim either, he’s an autolater. He is one who practices autolatry – self-worship. His faith is a means to an end – some say even his ideologies are too. I believe his pronouncement and claims of Christianity are like much of his life, a façade, carefully orchestrated.
If Mr. Obama thinks that his statement will soothe or answer the continued doubts about his faith, he’s fooling no one but himself. All he has done is fan the flames. He might as well have poured some lighter fluid on the pit at the bar-b-que.
Maybe I’m parsing hairs, and maybe I’m focusing too much on particular aspects of his speech to the detriment of other aspects, but I’m not alone in my overall analysis: A rather damning look by a former Christian.
At the very least, if Mr. Obama is truly a Christian, he needs to sit down and not only learn about what he believes and why, with logical consistency, but to be able to give a testimony and gospel presentation that doesn’t make more questions than actually clear anything up! Maybe I’m being too reactionary, too willing to get up on the bully pulpit, but I, like so many others are left utterly confused by this man, and every time he tries to clarify himself, we remain confused. No other president – not even George W Bush or Bill Clinton – has been this divisive. A good leader does not want to foster or promote confusion, even if there is disagreement. More importantly, a true Christian will leave no one confused about what he believes or the reality of who he is. Denominational differences are one thing, but Mr. Obama’s continued statements on faith go far beyond denominational, doctrinal differences. His confusing statements go right to the core of Christian orthodoxy, which crosses denominational lines.
Crossposted at www.wadingacross.wordpress.com