What I strongly object to, however, is when a candidate decides it's to his advantage to couch his beliefs and his campaign in spiritual terms and woo a segment of the electorate by attempting to sound like an orthodox believer, while at the same time denying the non-negotiables of the faith in circles where orthodoxy is not so fashionable.
Here is Barack Obama, speaking to Cathleen Fasani, author of a forthcoming book on the spiritual lives of public people:
"I'm rooted in the Christian tradition," said Obama. He then adds something most Christians will see as universalism: "I believe there are many paths to the same place, and that is a belief that there is a higher power, a belief that we are connected as a people."
Falsani correctly brings up John 14:6 (and how many journalists would know such a verse, much less ask a question based on it?) in which Jesus says of Himself, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." That sounds exclusive, but Obama says it depends on how this verse is heard. According to Falsani, Obama thinks that "all people of faith -- Christians, Jews, Muslims, animists, everyone -- know the same God." (Her words.)
Here's Obama telling Falsani, "The difficult thing about any religion, including Christianity, is that at some level there is a call to evangelize and proselytize. There's the belief, certainly in some quarters, that if people haven't embraced Jesus Christ as their personal savior, they're going to hell." Falsani adds, "Obama doesn't believe he, or anyone else, will go to hell. But he's not sure he'll be going to heaven, either."
"I don't presume to have knowledge of what happens after I die. When I tuck in my daughters at night and I feel like I've been a good father to them, and I see that I am transferring values that I got from my mother and that they're kind people and that they're honest people, and they're curious people, that's a little piece of heaven."
So my question is, just what belief DOES qualify one to be viewed as a Christian?
Obama is no Joshua; denies uniqueness of Christ, hell
hat tip: dee dee
Labels: Political Observation