Ahhh, satire.  You are a shrewd and honest lady.  (ht)


jesus / Obama

I’ve admitted a number of times that Barack Obama’s rhetoric of changing the world, creating a new world, bringing hope to the world, etc., stirs me a little inside.  I’m stirred because that’s what I want.  I live by the idealistic mantra that “another world is possible.”  That the world is broken, but slowly and surely, it is being put back together.

My problem, however, with Barack Obama is this: He doesn’t point to the Risen Lamb as the source of this new world.

His religious rhetoric implies that he views Jesus as the supporting actor for the real leading lady, politics.  I don’t doubt that his faith in God is real, but I simply don’t think he’s asking the question, “How would society be different if God were running the show, not man?”

Furthermore, as the linked article above satirically points out (along with magazine covers, news reports, and daily conversations with Obamites), many people view Barack — consciously or subconsciously — as a sort of savior figure.  As if one man could really bring about the kind of “new world” he preaches.  Christians, especially, should know that this is impossible.

But, like the Israelites, many Christians on both the Left and the Right are yelling, “Give us a king to lead us!

From time to time, when I hear an especially stirring Obama speech, I can find myself yearning for such a one.  Lord, forgive us.

4 responses to this post.

  1. I have to admit that I haven’t read all of your politics posts, but I have a few thoughts. Take them for what they’re worth.

    I remember a story about some disciples of Jesus coming to him because they ran into some people healing who weren’t part of their group. I don’t remember all of the details and I’m just too lazy to look it up right now, but I know that Jesus didn’t want to stop them.

    I bring this up because it doesn’t seem like Jesus is interested in getting the credit. Rather, it seems to me that Jesus was most interested in making the world a better place regardless of who is getting the credit.

    I used to be in the “I don’t vote because I’m a Christian” camp. However, working with people in poverty has changed my view. Sure, I think the best way to change the world is to change hearts. I think following Jesus is the best way to change hearts. But I know that even though holding out hope for changed hearts is a good thing, it does nothing to put food on the tables of the poor. Instead, I do everything I can to make a difference now. This includes voting and giving, and working within the flawed system. It also includes holding out hope that the world will receive the Gospel.

    Then again, I don’t think that God is in the business of magically putting food on the tables of the poor. That is my job, and I think I should do it any way I can.


  2. I bring this up because it doesn’t seem like Jesus is interested in getting the credit. Rather, it seems to me that Jesus was most interested in making the world a better place regardless of who is getting the credit.

    I dunno. I guess that depends on what you believe the “Jesus project” really was/is. I believe Jesus was introducing a new a better world, but specifically one that was/is under His lordship. So in that sense, he is concerned with getting the credit.

    If making the world a better place alone was his main concern, it seems like he could have taken things over politically through a military coup … but he didn’t. He chose the way of love, service, and subversion of the Empires of this world.

    So theologically, that’s where I stand.

    I also want to be clear that I think Christians can and should, in the midst of “having all things in common” and taking care of those with needs, advocate for a fair living wage, fair treatment of the homeless, fair housing policies, etc., but primarily on a local level. I see these things as sort of the “no-brainer” justice issues that we can work toward, primarily on a local level. Again, not expending more energy here than in using our collective imagination to find creative solutions, but also not looking the other way.


  3. This is totally off topic, but one time when Mitch was spending the night at my place, I told him that I “don’t understand how you can be a Christian and a Democrat”.

    I still can’t believe that I said that. What a douche I was.

    You are spot on, imho, Steve with your response. I take it to a different level when I’m thinking about these issues though.

    What is poverty? What is wealth? How do we determine what enough is? Do we judge by what the wealthiest person has? Or the average person? By an American? or by a Sudanese refuge…

    When you look to a person to fix the problems in the world, they must think about these questions. And at some point, someone is going to have to determine what is enough. Universal Health Care… sounds great until the government has to decide if at 75 your life is worth a 200,000 dollar surgery. Hope it works out well for you.

    Wealth is all relative, and the vast majority of what we have we could survive without. Is our job to take American poor, who have a standard of living far greater than the undeveloped world, and help them… or should we bypass them and help those with less.

    Collectively, we can’t make those judgement calls. Its up to an individual. When I see someone in need, in any way, I’m going to see what I can do for them with what I have. If we all did that, things would be better.

    As long as governments are trying to determine what is fair and just and trying to achieve those ends by the means of force, we’re gonna have problems. Christians have our own King, and we operate under his rule all ready. And through doing so, we call others to as well. I just don’t see the King of Kings ever seeking power to get people to do what they should be doing anyway… he calls them to a higher standard, sometimes they follow, sometimes they don’t. But he continued in his mission… to live amongst the poor, to be poor himself, and to love all people.

    And that’s what I will continue to do as well… until the day when this too shall be made right.


  4. I really liked this post, and thought the following quote was especially spot-on:

    “His religious rhetoric implies that he views Jesus as the supporting actor for the real leading lady, politics.”


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