Tuesday, December 09, 2008

George Bush and Oprah Spiritual Bedfellows?

The Bible is probably not literally true.  Different religions worship the same God.  The latest clips from Oprah's religious melting pot?  No, actually the religious beliefs of President Bush.  In a Monday night interview on ABC's "Nightline" our current president made declarations of faith that many Americans would identify with, but seem strangely dissonant with the beliefs of many of his evangelical supporters. 

 

 

Asked by Cynthia McFadden if he thought the Bible were literally true, he answered "You know.  Probably not. ... No, I'm not a literalist, but I think you can learn a lot from it, but I do think that the New Testament for example is ... has got ... You know, the important lesson is 'God sent a son." '  ...a wonderfully vague message that can be defined or applied in whatever way suits you best.

 

But the God of the Bible is the one true God, right?  Maybe not.  "I do believe there is an almighty that is broad and big enough and loving enough that can encompass a lot of people," he said.  In other words, people of many faiths are worshipping the same God.  In a very diplomatic expression of faith, he bases everything on his own personal experience.  "All I can just tell you is that I got back into religion and I quit drinking shortly thereafter and I asked for help...

 

These kinds of faith statements work wonderfully in a postmodern society that cannot accept the Bible as the Word of God or one religion as the only way.  But they will undoubtedly leave a bitter taste in the mouths of many Evangelicals who thought they had a president who believed exactly like them.  I am keeping my eyes open for Ron's outraged deprecation of the religious liberalism of Bush and the Republicans.

 

josh r

2 comments:

Ron Giesecke said...

Outraged? Nope. Knew it all along. Any president that can deliver the "Religion of Peace" punchline every Ramadan with a straight face hasn't got a clue.

-R

chantell said...

Bush looks uncannily like Will Ferrell in that picture. Weird.

Anyway, Ron may not be outraged, but I, for one, am livid.

How dare Bush make unpolarizing statements about God's Word? How dare he risk being out of lockstep with the evangelical monolith that voted him into office? Has he gone mad?

And what's up with the uber-humility? You didn't include this part:

"Bush said he is often asked whether he thinks he was chosen by God to be president.

'I just, I can't go there,' he said. 'I'm not that confident in knowing, you know, the Almighty, to be able to say, Yeah, God wanted me of all the other people.'"

Are you kidding me? He even goes as far as to suggest that God didn't especially exalt him as commander-in-chief!

Outrage is too passive an emotion to expect to have elicited from this post. Any one who bleeds red should experience nothing less than a paroxysm of pure, unadulterated, holy wrath at these revelations.