The Jeffress-Graham Switch and the Black Vote by Wm. Dwight McKissic, Sr.

Wm Dwight McKissic, Sr. is the pastor of Cornerstone Baptist Church in Arlington, TX. He blogs at Wm Dwight McKissic, Sr.

While touring the Dead Sea Scroll Exhibit recently, at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary with President Paige Patterson, Governor Rick Perry, and twenty other Dallas-Ft. Worth pastors and Christian leaders, I was privileged to meet for the first time the pastor of the First Baptist Church, Dallas, TX, Pastor Robert Jeffress. Recognizing who he was from television appearances and public photos—upon seeing Dr. Jeffress, I immediately extended my hand and said to him, without introducing myself, “I appreciate your voice of righteousness to our nation.” He also recognized me upon sight and almost simultaneously said to me, “Pastor McKissic, I’ve quoted you across this country, ‘Don’t equate my skin with your sin.’” I then told Pastor Jeffress, I’d heard he was using my quote, and I was thankful that he confirmed that. That’s basically the sum total of our brief chance meeting.

Dr. Jeffress was indeed a voice for righteousness when he described Governor Romney’s Mormon faith as a “cult.” In October 2011, while endorsing Governor Perry for President, Jeffress told reporters, “Every true, born again follower of Christ ought to embrace a Christian over a non-Christian.” Jeffress referred to Romney then as a “conservative out of convenience” who “does not have a consistent track record on the subject of marriage, on the sanctity of life.” He further stated, “I just do not believe that we as conservative Christians can expect him to stand strong for the issues that are important to us.”

Fast forward to today and Dr. Jeffress is still a voice of righteousness believing that Mormonism is still a cult, and that civil rights and gay rights are not proper parallels.

However, Jeffress has made a major switch regarding his initial theology/politics, inasmuch as he now embraces Romney for President-even as a “non-Christian” member of a “cult” over President Barack Obama who is a Christian, but does not hold a biblical worldview with regard to same-sex marriage and abortion. Perhaps, therein lays Jeffress dilemma—an ultimate decision to support Romney.

I can appreciate Pastor Jeffress not compromising his conviction—and one that I share—that Mormonism is a cult. However, my conscience and conviction will not allow me to vote for an individual who on more than one occasion has expressed a certain antipathy toward the poor and who, when given an opportunity to distance himself from the racist history and teaching in Mormon documents in a 2008 Tim Russert interview, Governor Romney refused to do so. Mormon “sacred text” refers to “dark skinned” people as “cursed,” “unattractive,” “filthy,” “despised” and “loathsome.” Voting for Mitt Romney given these viewpoints, expressed in his “Bible,” is a switch and compromise that I simply cannot make. I would rather fight than switch.

I applaud and appreciate Dr. Jeffress being a voice of righteousness on pro-life issues, gay-marriage issues and the civil rights vs. gay rights issue. However, I would be less than honest if I didn’t acknowledge that Pastor Jeffress’ switch is seen by many in the Black Community as inconsistent at best.

Evangelist Billy Graham historically has been a highly respected figure in the Black Community. Long before it was popular, he insisted on his meetings being racially inclusive, befriended Black preachers (including Dr. King) and singers and publically disagreed with Dr. W.A. Criswell’s segregation views, prior to his “open door” conversion. Billy Graham was highly regarded in the home I grew up in and viewed as a man whose heart was in the right place regarding issues of race.

However, Billy Graham’s recent departure from his lifelong practice of not engaging in partisan politics, and his removing the Mormon Religion from his website as a cult has generated a lot of discussion among Black pastors. The impression Graham’s decision leaves is that for the sake of electing Mitt Romney as President, he is willing to declassify Mormonism as a cult and engage in partisan politics for the first time in 94 years of living.

The question many are asking is, “why”? And, why now? If nominal Southern Baptists as Bill Clinton and Al Gore occupied the White House at the current moment, the question is would Billy Graham have made the same decision? (Deletion by editor as requested.)

The Southern Baptist Convention unanimously approved a resolution condemning President Obama’s position on gay marriage and his view of equating gay rights with civil rights—but refused to even bring to the floor for a vote a resolution condemning racism in Mormon documents. The question is why would Southern Baptists approve of one, while rejecting the other? Could it be that on both sides of the racial divide, that our theology is driven more by race, culture and economics than it is by theology, righteousness and the common good? The SBC’s refusal to condemn Mormon racist text aligns itself with the BGEA declassification of Mormonism being a cult. Both decisions were driven by placing partisan politics above theological integrity and accuracy.

This election will leave the country and Christians racially polarized and divided even more so than the 2008 Election. The tacit evangelical endorsement of Mormonism will pay long term negative consequences on evangelicalism and politics. The Graham announcements affirm Black Christians, who vote for President Obama because it demonstrates that political, cultural and economic expediency, sometimes trumps theological and moral considerations in voting decisions. We see this on both sides of the racial divide.

I’ve been asked the question several times, why is it that Black Christians vote for Democratic candidates overwhelmingly in light of the Democrats position on gay rights and abortion? Black Christians tend to prioritize social and economic justice issues (which are also life issues) and they consider those moral issues as well. Black Christians tend to compromise their faith on pro-life and gay rights issues in order to vote for the party that they perceive will best deliver social and economic justice. The White evangelical church in this election is willing to compromise their beliefs on Mormonism and racial and gender accountability in order to support Mitt Romney. Black and White Christians vote for the party and the president that they perceive will best empower them. They simply view empowerment and priorities differently.

For those who ask, how can President Obama be a Christian and hold non-Christian views on abortion and gay marriage?: The answer is the same way Anglo Baptists/Evangelical slaveholders were Christians but wrong about slavery and denying women the right to vote. Make no mistake about it:  President Obama and the Democrats are wrong on the issues of gay marriage and abortion. But just as Billy Graham is willing to declassify Mormonism as a cult in order to promote Romney, Blacks have prioritized economic and justice issues in order to elevate poor and historically oppressed people. I have burdens in my bosom concerning both parties. Therefore, I will be content to cast a write-in vote for Jesus Christ, and live with the results of who God sovereignly allows to become the next President.

If President Obama wins, I will take solace in the fact that Republicans will not be rewarded for their blatant disrespect of President Obama. Such as shouting “you lie” to him from the hall of Congress; the Governor of Arizona shaking her finger in his face; Laura Ingram referring to the President as, “you fool”; and I could cite many more disrespectful and racial attitudes and actions displayed toward President Obama, including declassifying Mormonism as a cult.

If Mitt Romney wins, I would hope that he would honor his commitment (though his history does not give me full hope) to stop same-sex marriage in its tracks and actually lead the Congress to adopt a constitutional amendment against same-sex marriage. If that happens, I will be eternally grateful and give God praise that my grandchildren will not grow up in a world where same-sex marriage is considered legal, sane and normal.

Although I’m not a Calvinist, I am perfectly content to trust the sovereignty of God in this election and praise His Name regardless to the outcome. I simply pray as a nation and as a church that we can come together in unity when the election is over.

Bart Barber, Dave Miller and Howell Scott need to be taken seriously regarding this matter of sounding a clarion call concerning the declassification of Mormonism as a cult sooner, rather than later. Is a cult only a cult until one of its members wins a major party presidential nomination and their opponent is a Black Christian who believes in gay marriage and abortion?

Pastor Jeffress and Evangelist Graham have a right to endorse and vote for Mitt Romney for President, just as Pastor Otis Moss and Pastor Frederick Haynes have a right to support President Obama for reelection.

What Billy Graham does not have the right to do is to declassify Mormonism as a cult without the larger evangelical community throwing the “red flag.” If evangelicalism does not throw the “red flag” before the election, that is even a greater sign of our political and racial divide. We ought to be able to come together in unity and make it clear that Mormonism is a cult even if Black Christians and White Christians vote for different candidates. The unity of the faith is at stake here (John 17:21)!

 

Comments

  1. says

    I get tired of race, and the comparisons thereof, being brought into every issue under the sun. All it does is create more division and animosity. If I remember correctly the Graham organization took the reference to Mormonism down because Romney had recently visited and the Graham organization did not want to become part of the political fray. While that seems to have been very effective int he secular world it seems the Christians world just could not resist.

    Just because the President calls himself a Christian does not mean we need to believe it. I am reminded here of Titus 1:16. There is no evidence that we have on hand a Christians candidate and a Mormon candidate. As far as condemning Obama and gay marriage verses Romney and Mormonism I believe the difference is clear. When Romney begins to promote Mormonism publicly and insist that everyone should accept it as the homosexual agenda does then we have a need for that equal condemnation. But until then there is no comparison to be made.

    • Dave Miller says

      I don’t really want to be confrontational here, Mark, because I share your concerns.

      But when I (a lily-white Iowa man) say, “I am tired of race being brought into every issue,” it is a luxury I have as a white man.

      I’ve never been pulled over simply for DWB, “driving while black.” We had a sweet-hearted black man in our church (now in heaven). He had a PhD and was a gentle, kind man. But he told stories of getting pulled over and intimidated by white police, just for driving in certain neighborhoods of town.

      I’ve never had to walk down the street and have people look at me with suspicion because of the color of my skin.

      I’ve never been discriminated against for hiring or anything else because of my color.

      It is a privilege of being a white American that we can say, “Race shouldn’t matter.” From my conversations with black Christians, they feel that race still does matter in America today.

      A black man who attends our church was in a local convenience store buying some snacks. On his way out, he met another man from our church (white) who was going in. They greeted each other hand headed on their way. The white man went in the convenience store and heard one worker say to another, “Did you watch that black guy to make sure he didn’t steal anything?”

      This man, a friend of mine, was judged because of no other reason than the color of his skin. I’ve never experienced that! Have you?

      • says

        When we overplay the racial issue it cheapens it and desensitizes people to it. It has no ultimate value and works against any real racism. By the way, I pastor a church outside of the Navajo reservation. I fully understand racism, if at no other time, here. My children have had to also learn to deal with it. But in the end I do not believe one has to be black to understand it. If you are pulled over for simply being black and have clear evidence then deal with that. But let’s not make something racial when clearly this issue has nothing to do with race. Let’s not cry wolf. We all know how that turns out.

    • Chief Katie says

      Frankly, everytime Dwight McKissic posts it’s ALWAYS about race. My son is a black man and he feels the same way.

      Mark, I concur. I’m sick to death of it. It has no bearing on the issues. We have two choices, neither good. But one is absolutely more evil than the other.

      One wants me to pay for abortions, and accept what the scriptures call sin. One wants to stop those evil practices, but belongs to a cult. I’m not happy about it. But God has granted me some decision making abilities and above all stopping the murder of the most innocent among us is the priority. The holocaust harkens.

      I’m sad we have such a poor choice, but we will have to deal with it. It doesn’t seem like we should be wasting our time calling out Pastor Jeffress, or taking on a man in his 90’s (and surely is failing in some mental acuity) as a distraction.

      Let’s stop the immediate problem and then set about to regain some morality in our populous. If we don’t make any progress there, none of the rest will even matter.

    • Dwight McKissic says

      Mark,

      I offered commentary that I thought would be appreciated here. Too often we talk about each other, rather than to each other. My post represent an effort for us to talk to each other. I was told once on this blog by–I believe–Frank L., to take my commentary to a Black blog.

      If for any reason my commentary is unwelcome and unwanted here, I will stop offering it. Dave has been gracious and kind in posting my thoughts,and for that I’m grateful. I would certainly understand, if Dave decided in the future, not to post my commentary for whatever reasons. I will simply be thankful for the many posts he permitted. If racial commentary is outside of the scope or appreciation of this site or readership–so be it.

      Finally, I was born into a world where the hospital that I was born in was determined by my skin color. The neighborhood in which I lived and the schools and churches I attended was determined by my skin color. The public school textbooks handed down to me–second and third hand–had the names of White students written in them, because they were given to the Black schools and students after they were worn out, and sometimes outdated. I sat in the balcony at the movie house in my hometown, because only White movie-goer’s were allowed to sit on the floor. My sister was unmercifully beaten by a White police officer–because she excercised her constitutional right not to sign a traffic ticket without the advice of counsel. The officer committed suicide a few days before the trial was to begin to hold him civilly accountable for his physically abusive offense. My race was designated on my drivers license when I first started driving. The BGCT loan funding committee in Texas were given interest free loans to White and Hispanic churches while charging Black Churches 6 % interest until the late 90’s. I would not have believed it if I had not been serving on the committee approving the loans. In part, because I protested this blatant racism, they later abandoned that practice. I could go on and on and on; but I believe you get the picture. Therefore, I was trained by the society in which I was birth in to think racially. The problem we have with integration today is we don’t have this dialogue with each other; therefore, we don’t understand each other.

      I believe it is very unwise and unhealthy to begin to judge whether or not the President is a Christian. If we use the criteria that has been used to determine the authenticity of his faith–and apply the same criteria to George Bush 1 and, (W) 2, and Nixon, Reagan, Carter, and Clinton, we would have to determine that many of the Presidents were not “Christian.” Again, it is very unwise and unfruitful-in my judgement–to pursue that trail.

      I hope I’ve addressed your concerns, but do know that I am more than willing to relieve you of your angst concerning reading my racial commentary with a simple request. Thanks.

      Dwight

      • Christiane says

        Dr. McKissic, I appreciate your voice here.

        If you are not welcomed by some here, I think it is THEIR problem, not the fault of SBCVoices or David Miller.

        It is not, nor should it ever become YOUR problem that some people do not welcome that you should speak as a black Southern Baptist pastor freely . . .

        I hope that you will remain one of the SBCVoices contributors. I think those people who object to what you have to say may actually need to hear it the most . . . and to think about it, and maybe someday to think about why it is that they object so very much.

      • says

        Dwight,

        I wasn’t going to post again on this only because I did not want to belabor the issue. But since you were kind enough to respond to mine I thought it best to extend the same courtesy.

        Dwight I grew up with racist parents, mine being from Culman AL. I never could buy into it and found myself on the scolded end of discipline more than a few times. Having lived in AL and parts of Fla I can tell you I have seen what you have mentioned.

        My concern is using a racial comparison where none fits. It is bad enough that the homosexual community tries to compare themselves to what folks like yourself went through. If we make the same Pseudo-comparisons then we feed them. Also the homosexual community is trying to use every legal and legislative means to force their agenda down our throats. That gives good reason to stand in public condemnation in the way the SBC has. But it seems to me an entirely different scenario with regards to Mormonism and Romney. Mormons are not trying to use those means to force people to become Mormons. And neither is Romney.

        People have their reasons for who they vote for. Some well reasoned and some not. But, that is up to the individual. But we want to make sure when we as people, as Christians and as those who cooperate in the SBC do not make bad comparisons based on issues that raise emotions so high. It belittles the real issues and creates more fog that clarity.

        As far as you posting on this blog, I have never suggested nor do I wish that you would never post here again. I have no horse in that race. In fact I hope that your relationship with Dave continues to be cooperative and extensive. God Bless

        • Dwight McKissic says

          Mark,

          I don’t want to belabor the point either. However, where you don’t see where a racial comparison fit, I do. The differences in what we see explains the voting patterns between the two races as well.

          Dwight

          • says

            Dwight,

            Well I will tell you what happens. Bringing race into situations like this then brings about suspicion and mistrust because of what we see as exaggerated claims which are unnecessary and often miss the real issues. In the need no one talks to each other but only talks past each other. Take for example Christ Matthews a media pundit who after the debate last night claimed those who oppose Obama only do so because of racism.

            My perception of constantly bringing up racism is that it is most often done, not because of clear facts, but simply because of suspicion. I would offer that is not a good reason to throw around racism.

            I was talking with someone the other day that has been deeply wounded by misuse of church discipline. Now every time church leadership in any church refuses to put up with poor behavior this person sees abuse in it. My response was:

            “We need to be careful once we get wounded by a church or leader not to now assign that behavior or motive to all others. We need to recognize that we are wounded and work extra hard to maintain discipline in our decision making paradigm with regards to churches and leaders. Not all of them nor are most of them mishandling things.”

            I would offer the same thing with regards to racism. Racism is not under every rock.

      • says

        Dwight, the concept of SBC Voices is that we need to hear from different perspectives in SBC life. Unless you begin to advocate heresy or some other wild doctrine, I will post anything you send me.

        I believe your voice needs to be heard.

        • Dwight McKissic says

          Dave,

          Thanks. I appreciate your labor of love with SBC Voices. I appreciate opinions expressed by everyone on this comment stream and appreciate being able to share mine.

          Dwight

      • says

        Bro. Dwight,
        Your points about judging the President’s Christian faith, and about the Mormon theology that condemns black people based on the color of their skin are both well taken, and your statement is well said. Most Christians are utterly uninformed about many Mormon teachings, including their eschatology and prophecy. If Mitt Romney is elected, the church will jump on declaring his election as proof of accurate prophetic revelation by their past prophets, and will use it to confirm the correctness of their doctrine. They’ve been waiting for this moment for a long time, and for that reason alone, as a Christian, I cannot cast a ballot for him.

        Galatians 1:8-9 seems almost prophetically written to address Mormonism. The Apostle Paul makes it abundantly clear that the preacher of any other gospel aside from that preached by Jesus Christ, would be accursed. He makes this point twice, and includes a note that even if this “other gospel” is preached by an angel from heaven. Moroni is the name of the “angel” who gave “the other gospel” to Joseph Smith.

        If there’s any chance that as a Christian, my vote for Romney would promote the Mormon gospel, directly or inadvertently, then I must give careful consideration to my vote, and cast it accordingly. You’ve offered at least one more good reason why it shouldn’t go to Romney, or to any Mormon who runs for President.

        I’m not really shocked to see the BGEA or Liberty take these positions regarding Mormonism. The Mormon church has spent billions of dollars on all kinds of public relations to convince Christians that the other gospel they preach is true. Not many Christians are well informed enough to know the difference. Perhaps that’s why they proselytize more Southern Baptists than any other Christian group.

    • says

      Romney does proclaim Mormonism publicly. He is a member of one of the church’s priesthood orders, and served both a two year mission and as a bishop of a local ward. He wears the protective underwear, symbolizing his passage through a temple ritual during which he swore an oath of loyalty to the church and to its founding and living prophets, above all else. If you know anything about what Mormons believe about their future destiny, and their eschatology, you’d be very, very concerned about his position on the Middle East. Would Romney use the power of the presidency to “self fulfill” Mormon prophetic utterances about their control of world events? I think so. The Presidents’ position on gay marriage is a moot point, since marriage is a states rights issue and the Republican party opposes expanding federal power over such issues. Abortion, well, the Republicans never had a better chance to overturn Roe v. Wade than they did during the first six years of the Bush administration when W could have appointed two clearly pro-life justices to the Supreme Court, and failed. Romney was, as governor of Massachusetts, in favor of both gay marriage and abortion, whether that was to “get along with the Democrats,” or out of conviction, its his record over his words.

      I’m not in a position to judge the heart and soul of another person based on political positions. A lot of redeemed people don’t have it all together doctrinally or politically. But if you’re solidly committed to the Mormon faith, which categorically denies everything about Jesus that makes him our savior, you’re not Christian.

  2. says

    I cannot remember a presidential election that presented as many theological/moral/ethical issues for Christians as this one is doing.

    What part does race play in all of this?
    Can a Christian vote for a Mormon? A liberal/unorthodox Christian?
    What is the spiritual role of the government?

    There seems to be no way to escape the issues in this race.

    • says

      Dave, agreed.

      I wrote on it here in a post about two self-professed believers that most Americans don’t believe.

      The issue of race is a another subject that we cannot pretend does not matter.

      Ed

  3. Jake Barker says

    Gentlemen (and I use that term loosley because I am addressing a group of Southern Baptists),

    A quote from elections past “it’s the economy, stupid”. To some there may be racial problems, but prove to me that Romney will be anything but equal to minorities. Prove to me, that as a mormon, Romney will attempt to take away my right as a Christian to speak out on the subjects that I believe have moral implications.
    I for one do not wish our government to interfere in “spiritual matters”. When that happens we have state sanctioned churches that tell us how to live our lives. The baptists through the centuries have fought against that.
    There is no doubt that mormonism is a false religion rather than a cult. The Anglican’s thought that of the Baptists. And there is no doubt that Obama, Pelosi, Boxer etal would gladly erode our constitutional rights, regardless of race, as free people. Herman Cain recognized that when he talked of the Democrats wanting everbody “on the plantaion”. I am ashamed of the American people for ignoring the candidacy of Alan Keyes in 2008. We had a chance to conquor two evils, that of racial predjudice and the evil of socialism. But in the end, in this election that occurs very soon, it is “the economy, stupid”. We cannot continue on with spending more than we create (and I don’t mean keep the presses running). The economy affects all of us regardless of race. In another election in another time I would say vote your conviction. In this election put your convictions in the closet and vote for the candidate that will fix our economy or we will not be around (as a free people) in 4 more years.

    • cb scott says

      Jake Barker,

      It really is more that “the economy, stupid.”

      The current president is ripping apart the very fabric by which this nation is held together. He is a Neo-Pagan and he has surrounded himself with Vandals and Visigoths whose very desire is to rewrite the way of life for every American no matter race, religion, or creed.

      • Jake Barker says

        CB,
        I agree with you “but”, the American people are so dumbed down that they can only concentrate on one point at a time. The one that is immediatley critical, is the economy because it affects each of us regardless of race, creed or regionality. At this point in history it (the economy) has the potential to take down this republic and reduce it to ashes. If that were to happen all else in American life would be reduced to mere hypotheses. I would disagree with you as to the current potus being neo-pagan. A neo-pagan believes in “doing no harm”. The current potus, his bride and all their hench-people want more than anything else to destroy America as we know it and substutute a communistic/socialistic government of our betters. You know that, I know that and hopefully enough of the American people know that in order that we may have a majority of electors pledged to vote for the mormon instead of the moron.
        For those readers who may be from The Great Republic of Texas, early voting began this AM. If you are from Texas and have not yet voted go to the polls now. Drop what you are doing and simply go. I will be back in state Sunday PM and at 12:01pm when the polls reopen I will cast my vote for the mormon.

  4. cb scott says

    Dwight,

    I find it simply hard to believe you still call the current president a Christian. Back during the last election, you and I had many conversations about his profession of faith. I directed you to his personal testimony given prior to his seeking the office of the president.

    His original testimony is not, and I think you may have agreed with me, a Christian testimony.

    Thus far in his presidency, he has proven to be one of the most anti-Christian presidents this nation has ever known.

    If you now want to state that I am making judgement of his faith, you are right. I am. He, according to the revealed truth of Scripture, is not a follower of Christ.

    Is Mitt Romney a Christian? No. He is a member of a Satan introduced American-born, false religion. No argument can be made that if he died today he would live eternally with Christ. if he dies ion his present condition, he will spend eternity in damnation and torment.

    If during the next debate a stage light falls on both Romney and Obama and kills them both, they will both immediately life up their eyes from the torments of hell. That is just a fact. Both men need to be born again according to the biblical gospel and we should all simply admit that.

    The proposition before every truly born again man and woman with the privilege to vote in this country right now is which one of these unsaved man will best serve this country according to the governing document y which we live, The Constitution of the United States.

    The obvious answer to that question is Mitt Romney.

    BTW, My position on both Romney and Obama has never changed. You know that to be true.

    Our nation as gone so terribly headlong into the snare of the Trapper that we who are Christ followers in this nation will have to settle for the best we can get at the moment and that is a godless Mormon. And frankly, we are getting not what we deserve, because our nation deserves total destruction. If we do get Romney, it will be because God is, for whatever purpose, showing us mercy.

    • says

      I’ve been told that I can’t say things like “Obama is not a Christian” so I’ll abide by Huggy Bear’s rules–but

      Barak Obama, Dwight’s beloved president, does not believe the gospel that jesus and Paul preached. He believes the gospel that Jerimiah Wright preaches which has nothing to do with scripture and is no more Christian that Romney’s.

      I don’t have words to express the contempt I have for Obama–and for anyone who supports him. (cue the cries of “Racist” in 4, 3, 2…..)

    • Dwight McKissic says

      CB,

      You and I don’t share the same view about President Obama being a Christian. I don’t question whether or not Obama is a Christian, just as I don’t question whether or not Nixon, Reagan, Ford, Carter, Bush 1& 2, or Clinton is a Christian. All of them claimed to be Christians too. And whatever criteria you would use to determine Obama is not a Christian, if you apply that same standard to these men, I doubt if they would qualify either. And no; neither one of us want to go back and rehash that discussion. But because we don’t share the same view, I disagree we the premise of your question: “…which one of these unsaved men will best serve the country…according to the constitution.” I assume this the question you want me to answer. As it relates to the main point of your question,

      As I’ve stated many times before, I am doing a write-in vote for Jesus. However, if I were going to vote for Romney or Obama, I would only vote for President Obama. The reasons are to numerous to list here, but to specifically answer your question, he is by far in my judgement the best man for the job between these two; and I could never vote for an unrepentant Mormon, given their racial views. That to me would be like a chicken voting for Col. Sanders.

      I hope that I specifically and clearly answered your question. Thanks for asking.

      Dwight

      • cb scott says

        Dwight,

        Thank you for your answer. I still consider you a personal friend. However, I feel you are, by your own desires, remaining blind to evident truth about the current president. Of course, we are all guilty of such self inflicted blindness for various reasons and at various times in our lives.

        Also, I must say that if you were to vote for Jesus in November and He won, He would refuse the position. He is King of kings and Lord of lords and His Kingdom is far beyond this nation, even in its best of times and I fear those times have long passed.

        I think Satan himself once offered Jesus the kingdoms of this world and their temporal glory. Jesus rebuked him and took up the cross His Father had prepared for Him prior to the foundations of this earth and you know the rest of that story as well as I.

        So, ultimately, I think we can agree in joining together and praying, “Come now Lord Jesus. Come now.”

        • Dwight McKissic says

          CB,

          Indeed I value you and trust you as a friend and brother. The one thing we agree on is as it relates to this subject matter is: “Come now Lord Jesus. Come now.”

          • says

            Dwight,

            CB believes former President Carter is a Christian–he had is picture made with him. I think I have it on my computer somewhere if you want to see it. I know the ABP has it in their archives.

            Sorry CB, just couldn’t resist. :)

          • cb scott says

            Tim and Big Daddy,

            I am making an effort to determine which of you is the Vandal and which is the Visigoth. However, I can easily determine that you both are heathens and infidels.

          • BDW says

            You were looking snazzy next to the always best-dressed Benjamin Cole. But what in the world was Marty wearing? I think I saw that “sports coat” (if that’s what you call it) at JC Penney recently (only shop there to buy Stafford undershirts!).

          • Dave Miller says

            So far, it has been my experience that 2nd VP of the SBC has no power at all. I am going to attempt to use any power I have to see that picture posted on the big screens at the SBC next year. I will likely fail, but I will certainly try.

    • Bill Mac says

      I’ll go a step further. We have had Presidents who talked a good game when to came to Christian terminology. But I honestly don’t believe that one can successfully run for president without being an inveterate liar. It will not surprise me in the least that when we stand before God we will not see very many presidents with us, at least from the modern era.

      • Dwight McKissic says

        CB, Tim, BDW,

        I could use a good dose of comic relief this morning and you guys sure supplied it. Thanks.

        CB, I had forgotten about that picture. You should at least be prepared to say about President Obama what Dr. Land said. Dr Land described him as a liberal, protestant, mainline, Christian. Bart and Chris are willing to sign off on that description; how about you? Of course, Bart uses “The Bart Dictionary,” to define “Christian,” so you may want to consult it before you sign off on it. You may find his definition over on the comment stream on my post dealing with Stetezer-Land Clarifying Distinction(s) on Mormonism.

        • says

          Dwight,

          CB asked President Carter this question to which our President answered in the affirmative. He asked; ‘Would you say that only the blood of Jesus can forgive sins?’, or something very similar to that. Thus, if that is the question you are asking of our current President than I am not sure he would affirm that question? Do you? While I understand that President Obama words speak of Christian conversion I also am confused with his affirmation of Christianity because he is coming at it under the theology he learned from Jeremiah Wright. Wouldn’t you agree that Wright’s “Liberation Theology” is something that should concern us all?

          • Tom Parker says

            Tim Rogers:

            You and other keep trying to discredit President Obama’s and Jimmy Carter’s Christian conversion, why?

          • says

            Tom,

            Because those presidents honor God with their lips but their hearts are far from him. As it stands, their conversions are not dishonored; they have never had a conversion that can be dishonored.

          • Frank L. says

            Hasn’t Jimmy Carter said on more than one occasion that there are other ways to heaven besides faith in Jesus Christ alone?

            It seems I remember this coming up several times. If that is the case then Carter’s own words discredits his Christian profession.

            I think this same principle applies to Obama based upon what he has affirmed and what he has not affirmed in regard to salvation through Christ alone.

          • Dwight McKissic says

            Bro Tim,

            You asked great questions that deserve much longer answers than I have time to give or space will permit. So at the risk of being misinterpreted and giving a quote that could perhaps be easily used to misrepresent my thinking on these matters, Let me simply say: (1) Would the right answer to CB’s question be a requirement litmus test for authentic salvation? No. The testimony President Obama gave meets in my understanding of Scripture the requirements of salvation. I don’t know exactly how President Obama would answer that question, but being that he and George W. Bush, and likely George H. W. Bush are all universalist, I’m sure they would give something less than a “Yes” answer to the question I’m not sure that we could prove that any President-including the beloved President Reagan–would give a “Yes” answer to that question.

            (2) Wright’s Black liberation theology is what would take a dissertation for me to give a proper an adequate response to your question. However, let me simply say: a professor at Moody, well capable of evaluating the true gospel message, informed me based on his personal visits to Wright’s church, he has heard on multiple occasions the gospel preached there with accuracy. He knows believe who regularly attend there and are strong, growing, maturing believers. Eight thousand people attend that church. I am not willing to believe they are all going to hell because of Jeremiah Wright preaching Black liberation theology, nor am I willing to put all of the White Baptists Slave Owners in hell for preaching White Supremacy. As Alan Cross stated, until 1965 White Baptist Churches preached essentially what Jeremiah Wright preached(of course in reverse, including W. A. Criswell), and I am not willing to put all of them in hell. Somehow, the gospel got through to those people, and I believe the gospel got through to President Obama and the rest of the 8000 people who attend that church.

            Good to hear from you. I hope I answered your question, but I got a feeling that you might not agree with me, but there is value in communicating honestly and openly.

  5. Christiane says

    I was thinking how much our black citizens have gone through,
    so that they could HAVE a ‘voice’ . . .

    I remember THOSE days, which thankfully were filmed so that we never forget what people went through so that our country could become ‘our’ country . . . a place for ALL of our citizens to speak without intimidation and fear.

    Because I am a witness,
    I AM OBLIGATED to encourage Dr. McKissic to be a ‘voice’ openly as a black citizen speaking for our black Americans.

    In speaking up, Dr. McKissic honors the efforts of those whose ‘voices’ were punished and denied in past days.

    It is a good thing for him to speak freely his opinion. It is right and just and honorable for him to have this privilege, and I thank him for his courage.

    • Dwight McKissic says

      Christiane,

      Thanks for understanding and the encouragement. Much needed and appreciated.

      Dwight

  6. says

    “Black and White Christians vote for the party and the president that they perceive will best empower them. They simply view empowerment and priorities differently.”

    An excellent quote. A lot of people take various positions on a host of issues for the sake of “empowerment.” Popularity, promotion, privilege, influence, reputation… whatever you call it, it amounts to a lust for personal glory. This permeates our culture and is the greatest failure of evangelical leaders — ruining more ministries than adultery, pornography, and financial malpractice. And worse yet, ministries given to it remain, not only intact, but celebrated.

  7. Bart Barber says

    Dwight,

    Thank you for the link. I’ve learned so much more since I wrote the post that you cited. I’ve now seen the video of Jerry Falwell, Jr., on CNN stating that Liberty University does not consider Mormonism to be a cult. I never thought I would live to see the day.

    And so, I appeal to you all—whatever outcome is brings about in the voting booth for you, however it shows up in your preaching, writing, conversing—please, please, please, care more about the health of our churches right now than about the health of our nation. The nation cannot be healthy if our churches are sickly, anyway.

    Now, Dwight, one little thing, and then I’m done: Although you and I agree about so much on this topic, I want to make it clear to everyone reading that I do not believe that President Obama is a Christian. I do not say this because of his positions on abortion or gay marriage. There are many Christians, as you have accurately noted, who have embraced all manner of evil down through the years, including too many Christians today who have somehow come to tolerate abortion. Those are not the reasons why I fear for President Obama’s soul. Rather, having read his interview with Cathleen Falsani, I find that his descriptions of sin and salvation are not gospel descriptions of those things.

    If my reaction to that fact is to become angry and to vote against President Obama in a huff, then I’m revealing the evil in my heart. May I instead be like the exiled Hebrews and long for the reconciliation to God of the secular authorities over me.

        • says

          I was very disappointed in President Bush for that change in his theology. Before he was elected, I heard him give a strong testimony that identified Jesus as the only path to heaven. Then, I am afraid, political expediency moved him in the wrong direction.

          The story is too common. We sacrifice our unpopular beliefs to gain political power.

          • cb scott says

            Dave,

            I agree with you and feel that such compromises by leaders has greatly contributed to our downfall as a nation. It does sadden m soul.

        • Bart Barber says

          Gosh, Aaron—I presumed that, taking the position that I’m taking, I wouldn’t get any tough questions from Dems. ;-)

        • Bart Barber says

          But, to reply substantively, Dwight and I have been down this road before. I’m skeptical about the relationship several of our Presidents have had with the Lord. I want to be consistent: If it is a testimony that wouldn’t have me presenting them for baptism in our local congregation, then I’m not going to call it a Christian testimony just because they’re running for high office.

          That having been said, although I disagree strongly with the many creative ways that people have arrived at their conceits about the wideness of God’s mercy, if a person gave a credible testimony of having come under conviction as a sinner and having repented, placing faith in Jesus Christ and confessing Him as Lord, I wouldn’t necessarily take each and every error on these matters as damnable heresy.

          But every time someone comes into my office seeking salvation (or asking for baptism) that person gets to tell me what sin is. If they don’t know what sin is, they don’t know what the gospel is.

    • says

      Jerry Falwell must be rolling over in his grave.

      As a longtime supporter of Liberty, I am deeply grieved by the blatant compromise demonstrated by Jerry, Jr.

      I can tell you this, though. In Bible classes and in the Liberty Seminary, Falwell’s sad compromise and denial of the gospel has not reached the professor.

  8. says

    “The Southern Baptist Convention unanimously approved a resolution condemning President Obama’s position on gay marriage and his view of equating gay rights with civil rights—but refused to even bring to the floor for a vote a resolution condemning racism in Mormon documents.”

    I agree we ought to be very concerned when Christians weaken their stance on Mormonism for the sake of political points. But what some Christians do have nothing to do with the candidates themselves. What Billy Graham and others have done are things they will have to answer for, but their actions do not speak to Romney’s qualifications.

    At the end of the day, there are no perfect candidates. With one possible exception (Mike Huckabee), I don’t know when we’ve seen many solid Christians have much of a chance to even get past the primary, let alone actually nominated for a party’s candidate. In the current election cycle, we didn’t have any candidates that I considered solid Christian examples (despite politically expedient posturing from certain Texas governors… “prayer meeting” right before candidacy announcement, anyone?) so it comes down, as it always comes down, to a choice of who will be the best candidate to address the country’s problems. There are no perfect choices. Ever. So we could choose to never vote, or we could choose to take the best available option. With that in mind, I am happy to vote for Mitt Romney even as I pray for his salvation.

  9. Jess Alford says

    Bart Barber,

    Sickly church=Sickly nation, I agree 100%.

    The church has not left it’s comfort zone, since wagon tracks left the church yard. It’s our fault. Thank you..

  10. Adam G. in NC says

    Every one of the SBC Voices articles about this BGEA cult-removing fiasco has resulted in comments that struggle to stay on-focus…

    Yes, we (nearly) all agree that Romney would be the better choice. Yes, we all agree that an Obama re-election woud be a disaster. Yes, we all will probably vote FOR Romney. Shoot, I WILL vote for Romney but thats not what should be concerning us here…

    What SHOULD be concerning us (and I believe it was the focus of all of these articles) is the fact that some who claim to be “gospel” christians have decided to water-down the truths of scripture in favor of politics. THAT should be what concerns us. The fact that Romney is the better choice is just common sense. The fact that Mormonism is a cult and should always and forever be labeled as such should be common sense as well.

    Bart said it perfectly. “care more about the health of our churches right now than about the health of our nation. The nation cannot be healthy if our churches are sickly, anyway”
    That goes for our doctrine also.

    How many comments will it be before we are right back on the “Romney vs Obama” conversation instead of the “Truth vs. Political Expediency” conversation.

  11. says

    I can, perhaps, appreciate better than most of the others that have written in response to Dr. McKissic his feeling regarding Mormonism and its degrading and racist remarks concerning Black people. The reason I say so is based upon studying Black or African American History as it is called now in undergraduate school, in my M.A. Program, and in my Ph.D. program which I did not complete even though I wrote a Prospectus for A Doctoral Dissertation in Black History. I also did my project for the Doctor of Ministry on Christian Love and Race Relations and that while my project director who was the Moderate or more Liberal persuasion told me, “You ought to know better than to select a controversial topic like that. If that church fires you, I will be right there, behind them, support them.” Brethren, if you had been subject to the slurs, the insults, the outright prejudice that degrades you, making you into a second class human at best and a degraded animal at worst, you would be up in arms about the Mormons. Their theology is one of manipulation, authoritarian manipulation. The idea that they were persecuted and drive west by that persecution is offset by the fact that their views on marriage and there persuasion of women to leave their homes and families to follow a culties religion at the expense of families deserted, abandoned, to join in polygamist relationships that Western Civilization had been seeking to jettison due to the knowledge of the Christian Faith and the experiences witnessed in societies like the Moslems where it is practiced (many a Muslim empire was ruined by family conflicts over who would be the next ruler of a nation with each wife of the former or late ruler, seeking to promote her son. In any case, I can remember the divisions on trains, if not on buses, where the car was divided by a partition with the sign above it for colored on one side and for whites on the other. I can remember forty-two years ago and a dear sister in the FBC of Orangeburg, SC telling me about her experience of teaching little black children for the first time before the massive integration effort which I helped to ease by acting as a group leader in the conferences designed to facilitate integration. That dear lady said, “Mr. Willingham, I cried, when I realized what segregation had done to the personalities of those little black children.” I shall never forget how she said that. Even now I get tears, when I think about it and about the Black young people I taught, one of whom had been wounded in the Orangeburg Massacre though he was standing on the porch of a dorm watching what was happening when the soldiers and state troopers cut loose with heavy weapons such as high powered rifles. Yes, Dr. McKissic, I think I grasp what your saying. But also consider our problem. If we vote Mr. Obama (and I did not because of his stand on abortion..when he ran back in 2008). Just this past week, I heard of a black minister in North Carolina calling on Blacks to vote against Obama due to his views on abortion and same sex marriage. I even received a phone call from a Black lady telling about the President’s stand on these issues. These matters are public news here as I suspect they are elsewhere. We are caught in a situation, where the reed on which we are trying to lean might break and pierce our hands, Mr. Romney is a weak reed, indeed. I agree some are going too far in approving of Mormonism and trying to make it appear as Christian, but then Mr. Obama leaves us wondering about his Christianity when he does so much in favor of Moslems (some of whom seem bent on destroying us and our free way of life). He gets rid of the National Day of Prayer, but then has the Mormons on the White House Lawn, as if they are the only group to be recognized. I don’t mind their recognition, but I do not care for it to the getting rid of the National Day of Prayer or of the so called many mistakes where the administration’s workers try to jettison the practice of chaplains who pray in the name of Jesus and then pretend it was a mistake???? I can understand his previous pastor’s anger and bitterness of damning America better that others, but then his inconsistencies in practice make me wonder.

    IN any case, we are caught between the devil and the deep blue sea, so to speak. I am against abortion and sodomy, for the Word of God written is very clear and explicit on such practices. While I do not approve of the effort to apply OT laws to modern situations, neither do I approve of the attitude of anything goes. I do not trust Mr. Romney, but what else can I do. I would vote for a Moslem who would let Christians pray in the name of Christ, who would be against Moslems of the jihadiest -persuasion as to extreme violence against Westerners, etc., who would be opposed to abortion, to sodomy, etc. A Mormon who would be against such things can also get my vote (If I do not vote, Obama’s practices continue and become worse…also I don’t believe our economy will take any more debts…and it may be too late already). Come on, Dr., your telling us that the Mormons are bad, but remember right now their are Black folks being enslaved by lighter skin Muslims in the Sudan – right now…Do you want slavery to come back via the Moslem route? I get really angry about Huckabee setting this one out. And more angry at the Republican Party for giving us unvetted Candidate on the issue of Race (Mormonism needs to get its house in order by repudiating its use of the terms you indicated, but that would mean speaking about some of their writings that they regard as Scripture). Well, Dr.?

    • Dwight McKissic says

      Dr. Willingham,

      I’ve read your comment three times and I am not exactly sure what your question is. If you give me a clear, succint question, to the best of my ability, I will give you a clear succint answer.

      At this point, to the extent that I can understand what you are asking, my answer is, I am not advocating a vote for or against Mitt Romney, or for or against President Obama. If like me you find it difficult to vote for either one, I am suggessting one vote for a third party candidate, or do a write-in vote as I plan to do. Again, I will be glad to address a question more specifically, if you give me a clear, succint question. Look forward to your response and I want you to know that I always appreciate your perspectives. Thanks.

      Dwight

      • says

        Dr. McKissic: You practical guarantee the re-election of the incumbent and a continuation of the abortion policies and the sodomizing of America. As anyone knows, a vote for a third party candidate virtually guarantees the incumbent. My problem is I want abortion stopped. After all, it was a nefarious policy developed by the Eugenics people back in the early part of the 20th century to get rid of the inferior people (meaning Black people among others), one of the most vicious policies I have ever studied in history. Much as I despise the racism of Mormon documents that you cited, I am resolute on the issue of stopping the killing of unborn babies, a considerable number of whom would be Black. The folks who run things are talking and have been talking for sometime of decreasing the world’s population by 5.5 billion people. A question on a exam my 11 year old son took back in ’83 was this: “If you were an official in a world government and had an over population problem with a country in Africa, how would you handle it? a. Have a war and kill them off. b, Use an infectious agent, germ or disease and kill them off. c. Let them starve.” The school that allowed that question on a computer quiz (which was mentored by a 20 year old Black college kid) wanted our son for a student. He never went back. He did like it, and neither did we. That question a friend told me was on his state department exam in the 60s along with some others that he did not like, and he got up and walked out. I care and care passionately about these things, dear brother, as I know you do. Politics are often the option of the possible, much as we might despise it. Would you have abortion and the sodomizing to continue?

        • Dwight McKissic says

          Dr. Willingham,

          I am only responsible for one vote. I don’t necessarily weight the effect that my one vote might have on the election. I have to live with my conscience, values and convictions. Therefore, I vote accordingly, regardless to the consequences. Thia election poses a dillema for many, like none other.

          • says

            Dr. McKissic: I appreciate and respect your effort to vote your conscience. It is very likely that most of the respondents to your blog do the same. While I despise the racist idiocy of the Mormon documents, I have to take the fact into account that the Mormons have made some changes in their reception of Blacks. Obviously, if they hope to make any progress among Blacks, they had to do that. I shall not be surprised to eventually see Blacks in the highest echelons of that cult. But in the case of Mr. Obama, I voted against him due to his views on abortion. He won and he approved the using of my tax money to pay for the murder of innocent infants, many of whom would be Black babies, accomplishing the same thing as was intended by Margaret Mead’s old Eugenics program which was financed by the same people/organizations which financed Mr. Obama. I remember having one of the theoreticians for World Communism during my years at Lincoln Univ. in Mo. He had a Ph.D. from the far leftest school, the Univ. of Chicago. The foundations and families that got control of that Baptist school back in the late 1800s and begin their assault on the Bible followed by the training of a leader in Communist thought plan to reduce the world’s population by 5.5 billion. They play hard ball, and socialism is the name of their game. Unfortunately, they have control of both parties, and we are facing a terrible time in the next 20 years – unless God gives us a Third Great Awakening. I vote for Romney as I want the blood letting to stop, the murder of babies to stop, the curse of America, the holocaust of holocausts (55 million in America alone, not counting the hundreds of millions around the world) to stop.

        • says

          First of all, it is pure poppycock to suggest that a vote for a third party, or write in, is a vote for the incumbent. That has been proven to be false by so many different paths, this computer page isn’t long enough to list them. We do not directly elect the president, we vote for electors and it is winner take all state by state. Voting one’s conscience by selecting a candidate that best represents their views, regardless of what chance that candidate may have at getting elected, is not a vote for the incumbent.

          Actually, from a political perspective, it is remarkable how much Romney and Obama are alike, more than different. Neither one has a clue about how to cut government spending to reduce the deficit. Obama has a list of social programs and government jobs to fund, Romney wants to throw money away on military adventures and $5 billion in tax cuts for the wealthy. The deficit goes up by anywhere from $10 trillion to $12 trillion regardless of which one is elected. The president used to be against abortion on demand and against gay marriage, now he’s for it. Romney is the Governor of Massachusetts who ordered town clerks to issue marriage licenses to gay couples back in 2004. Now he says he’s against it, but that’s a position of convenience for his party, since there is not a single thing a sitting President can do about it, one way or the other. DId you watch the debate last night? Nine times, count ‘em, nine times Romney said, “I absolutely agree with the President on this…” The health care plan that Obama put in place was Romney’s plan in Massachusetts, that he now says he will repeal and replace on day one. What will he replace? Just the names of the aspects of the plan, he clearly has no intention to repeal anything, they’re his ideas.

          Seems to me the only way to cast a ballot for someone who actually has a different view is to vote third party.

  12. volfan007 says

    Hi Dwight. Long time no see. I wish I could buy you lunch sometime, Brother. You know, you, and Robin Foster, and Dave, and I need to go to an all you can buffet, sometime. We could all go up the buffet, and just hold our plates for a while, and watch the manager sweat. :)

    David

    • Dwight McKissic says

      David,

      LOL. I needed a good laugh too. This comment stream has been pretty serious.

      Dwight

  13. volfan007 says

    Liberty U. is saying that Mormonism is not a cult. Wow. This is really getting sad.

    Bart, I’m like you in that we shouldnt sell our soul for politics. I’m afraid that many people are doing just that. Hey, I’m voting for Romney, because I cant vote for a big govt., socialist, pro abortion Obama. But, Mormonism is a cult, and Romney is a Mormon; and I’m not gonna sell the truth just to try to get someone elected into a political office.

    This is sad. The Billy Graham Association, and now Liberty.

    David

      • volfan007 says

        Bart,

        I never thought I’d see the day that homosexuality would be looked upon as okay by so many people. And, no, I never thought I would ever hear of Liberty U. and BGEA saying that Mormonism wasnt a cult. I mean, Moroni? baptism for the dead? Jesus and Lucifer were brothers? green underwear?

        This is amazing in a very bad way. It’s like hearing that Gandalf has turned bad, and has become the new leader of Mordorf.

        David

      • cb scott says

        Two extremely pampered momma’s boys whose daddy was actually a real stand-up guy. That’s who’s running LU.

    • says

      I don’t mind someone making a distinction like Ed Stetzer’s where we are clear that Mormonism is not Christianity, it’s a false religion, while avoiding the cult reference because of associations with Waco, but I do take issue with groups like BGEA and Falwell saying it’s not a cult but not making clear that it is a false religion and Mormons are lost sinners in need of salvation

      • Bart Barber says

        Chris,

        I do mind the loss of the “cult” terminology. Although I understand the difficulties associated with making suitable differentiation between the sociological and theological definitions of “cult,” something significant is lost when our terminology doesn’t suitably address the fact that Mormons claim to be Christian and emerge from within Christianity.

        New Testament Christianity treated differently on the one hand those false religions that had no connection with Christianity and on the other hand those false religions that purported to be Christian. The latter received unabated severity. Christ understands and has revealed to us in scripture that we must respond with zeal when people attempt to muddy the waters over what it means to follow Christ.

        • says

          I suppose one reason I don’t mind the shift is because I’m among those that don’t really know how to differentiate the term cult. I’m one of those Stetzer was talking about who associate cults with Waco. :)

          That said, I understand your distinction and that’s a good point: Mormonism is a false religion masquerading as Christianity. The same, however, could be said of many mainstream groups that claim to be Christian. My favorite example is the United Church of Christ denomination which has to be one of the most pagan groups out there. Should we refer to such groups as cults?

          • Dwight McKissic says

            Chris,

            The question is timing: why the “shift” in terminology from “cult” to one of the “four great world religions,” and the distinctions in terminology–theological cult vs. sociological cult–now? Why didn’t these “shifts,” “distinctions,” and declassifications (Graham—Liberty U.) happen ten years ago? Are there any connections to these shifts-distinctions-& the Romney campaign? And, if so,
            doesn’t that stink to high heavens ?

            Dwight

          • says

            Dwight,

            The statements from Graham and Falwell certainly seem to be due to political expediency, and that needs to be called out. As I’ve noted elsewhere, those men were wrong to do what they did. As for the timing in general, it’s an issue that has risen to the limelight because of Romney. It makes sense that there are more discussions clarifying the nature of Mormonism since Romney’s affiliation has brought more attention to it.

        • says

          So what’s worse, loss of cult terminology or calling Mormonism the fourth Abrahamic faith on NUMEROUS occasions?

          There’s some serious inconsistency at play here in the way some have responded to BGEA and Liberty vs. how folks have responded to Richard Land and his fourth Abrahamic faith rhetoric.

          Land has done more to help evangelicals “get over” Romney’s Mormonism than Billy Graham or Liberty University. He’s done quite a bit to help Southern Baptists and other Christian conservatives view Mormonism VERY differently than they ever have.

          It’s easy to speculate why Land gets a pass from some on this matter. But, I do wonder where the outrage has been? SBCers have no control over BGEA or Liberty. But they obviously do have some input into the messaging of the denomination’s most visible spokesman. Has any blogger, any SBC pastor offered a public critique of Land as is being done against Graham and Falwell here? He’s been preaching the 4th Abrahamic faith stuff for quite some time, since at least 2007. He cranked that talk up in 2008 and again in 2011-2012.

          • says

            I wonder what he means by that. It’s certainly a peculiar claim and I don’t see how it can have any historical legitimacy (but in much the same way, Islam cannot legitimately be called an Abrahamic faith). That said, at least he’s still not leaving the door open to Mormonism being considered acceptable. At least, I assume when he refers to it as a distinct religion, he means it does not hold the way of salvation.

  14. Jess Alford says

    Dwight,

    I would welcome whatever you have to say anytime, It’s called free speech. Every Pastor exercises their free speech on SBC voices and you are no different. Hang in there brother!

  15. says

    Dwight McKissic said,
    “The Southern Baptist Convention unanimously approved a resolution condemning President Obama’s position on gay marriage and his view of equating gay rights with civil rights—but refused to even bring to the floor for a vote a resolution condemning racism in Mormon documents. The question is why would Southern Baptists approve of one, while rejecting the other?”

    I see a big difference in the two.
    President Obama is currently pushing an agenda in favor of homosexual marriage and abortion.

    On the other hand, Governor Romney is not pushing a racist agenda and does not believe in or practice a racist agenda.

    Were Romney doing so, I believe the SBC would not hesitate to speak up.
    David R. Brumbelow

      • Dwight McKissic says

        David B.,

        How can u say that he does believe in or practice a racist agenda when he says he stands by the “faith of his fathers,” who have never acknowledged or repented of the racist text & the Mormon racist history?

        Dwight

          • Dwight McKissic says

            Chris,

            Are u comfortable with Romney refusing to distance himself from the racist text he consider authoritative?

            I don’t see any Blacks apart of his Senior staffing that concerns me. I don’t see any serious relationships or connections with the Black community that disturbs me. During his tenure as a Mormon Bishop, the Mormon church would not allow Blacks in the priesthood & Romney never spoke out against the racist policy while he was a leader, & expected to enforce their racist policy. That disturbs me.

            Dwight

          • Frank L. says

            Dwight,

            Exactly how many of his senior staff do you know?

            I don’t know any and I’m sure the one Romney spokesman I’ve seen as a senior staffer is not the only one.

            What is the quota of “Black People” required on a staff in order not to be considered racist?

            I know you make this charge, and you may be correct. Or, you may be stating what you which to be correct so that your assumptions are correct.

            I think that kind of reasoning is tenuous at best, and perhaps less than genuine.

            Seems to me you must come up with the following information to give your accusation any weight: 1) the quota percentage to qualify an organization as non-racist; 2) proof that Romney’s staff does not meet that quota.

            As I said, I do not believe in #1, but even if I did, I don’t know #2. So your information will be helpful.

          • Dwight McKissic says

            Frank L.,

            The fact that they are not visible in his entourage is a problem. I’m aware of at least two in his employ. But I am unaware of any significant top level Black staffers. Even if they are there, that does not answer the issues of race in his Mormon racists text that he has never disavowed.

            Dwight

          • Frank L. says

            Dwight,

            OK. I get where you are coming from. You have determined Romney is a racist so you interpret anything about him or his campaign accordingly.

            That is not usually called “evidence.” That is usually called a circular argument, or even stereotyping.

            I simply do not know about his staff. I do not know of anything he has ever said or done that shows he is a racist. I do not understand why in the absence of any evidence whatsoever, you would not be willing to give him a chance to see what he might do.

            If you feel your “Book of Mormon” presupposition is strong evidence for how Romney will act, then I understand your reticence. I don’t totally discount your observation in that regard.

            I can understand, and even share your concern to a degree.

        • says

          Because he doesn’t speak for or have to answer for all Mormons. If you were to ask a student at Truett Divinity School about the passages in the Old Testament where God ordered the nation of Israel to kill infants, they would say that those reflect a tribal understanding of God and not the God of the New Testament. They’re called Christians but obviously don’t believe the Bible. Prove Romney himself is a racist if you can.

        • Chief Katie says

          I’m not sure I see any reason for anyone to call the Mormon history racist at this stage of the game. We all know it’s true. For me however, I’d vote for a cigar-store-indian before I could vote any living breathing human being who could say this:

          Obama, Senate floor, 2002: [A]dding a – an additional doctor who then has to be called in an emergency situation to come in and make these assessments is really designed simply to burden the original decision of the woman and the physician to induce labor and perform an abortion. … I think it’s important to understand that this issue ultimately is about abortion and not live births.

          Obama, Senate floor, 2001: Number one, whenever we define a previable fetus as a person that is protected by the equal protection clause or the other elements in the Constitution, what we’re really saying is, in fact, that they are persons that are entitled to the kinds of protections that would be provided to a – a child, a nine-month-old – child that was delivered to term. That determination then, essentially, if it was accepted by a court, would forbid abortions to take place. I mean, it – it would essentially bar abortions, because the equal protection clause does not allow somebody to kill a child, and if this is a child, then this would be an antiabortion statute.

          But of course, let’s not punish Obama’s daughters, or prevent them from equal opportunity should they become pregnant. Daddy’s philosphy is much moare imporant than the 10 commandments.

          I will even go further. Christians simply do not promote people with this view toward God’s creation. No passes, no excuses. Killing a child is murder.

  16. John Wylie says

    Bro. Dwight,

    What I’m about to ask I mean sincerely and with respect. In 2008 the extreme liberation theology views of President Obama’s home church, Trinity UCC, came to light. Also, Pastor Wright invoked God’s damnation on America and it was played well before the election. Did that give you pause to vote for him in 2008? If you didn’t hold the theological views and statements of President Obama’s home church and pastor against him, why do you not do the same with Mitt Romney? I appreciate the fact that you have said that you can’t vote for President Obama this time and I can’t imagine how difficult that must be for you.

    • Dwight McKissic says

      John,

      I voted for McCain-Palin in 2008 primarially because of my appreciation for the belief system & leadership skills, background & personality of Sarah Palin. The last time I voted for a Democratic presidential candidate was in the year 1980. Thanks for asking.

      Dwight

      • cb scott says

        Dr. Dwight McKissic,

        Go back up and answer my question that you intentionally avoided the first time you read it.

        • Dwight McKissic says

          CB,

          I want to make sure that I answer the question that you’re asking. Would you please restate your question so that I can make sure I specifically answer the question u are interested in?

          Dwight

        • John Wylie says

          Bro. Dwight,

          I assumed that you voted for Obama for two reasons: (I’m just being honest) 1.) Because you are African American and more than 90% voted for him and 2.) When you came out so vocally against him, I assumed that it was a reversal of a previous decision. That’s how you came across to me. By the way brother, I mean no disrespect whatsoever. I sincerely respect your courageous stand.

          • Dwight McKissic says

            John,

            Thanks for your honest answers. That’s why dialogue is so important. We simply sometimes don’t understand each other until we’ve had a serious, sincere , honest and seeking common-ground kind of dialogue.

  17. says

    Dr. McKissic,

    Thank you for sharing. Your post stated so eloquently what should be so painfully obvious.

    I’ve also chosen to vote for neither Romney nor Obama this election cycle. I’ll be voting for a third party or write-in candidate.

    Blessings,
    John Wallace

  18. Ron West says

    Dwight,

    Thanks for this thoughtful post. It has been helpful and in line with much of my thinking on the dilemma we evangelicals have in deciding how to vote in this election.

    In regard to the way many evangelicals we admire are back tracking on their view of Mormonism as a cult for political reasons, this is not the first time this has happened. In the mid 80s the SBC executive committee was asked to make a statement in opposition to President Reagan’s sending an ambassador to the Vatican and recognition of it as a state with all the accompanying privileges. The Executive Committee appointed Reagan US attorney appointee Alan Sears to study the issue. Surprise! Surprise! He recommended not making a statement at that time even thought the SBC had a long standing opposition to appointing an ambassador to the Vatican. I asked an executive committee member why they would not act. He told me they did not want to do anything that would hurt the reelection of Ronald Reagan.

    I wonder if Jerry Falwell Sr. would be any different that his son on the Mormon issue. After all, Jerry Sr. had no problem appearing in public with, sponsoring prayer breakfasts with and accepting money from Sun Myung Moon a man who claimed Jesus Christ was a failure and he, Moon, was the true messiah. The Moonies were worse than a cult.

  19. says

    Is Obama a Christian???

    When did he become a Christian??? And who Baptized Him???

    Has anyone ever heard him give his testimony in public??? Has anyone ever heard him say that Jesus Christ is his Lord and Savior???

    Why did he change his name from “Barry Soetoro Obama” to “Barack Hussein Obama”??? In what Christian Church is it the custom to take a Muslim name??? Just asking???

    I am asking these questions because after four years the main stream Media still refuses to ask these basic questions of this man… Perhaps Brother Dwight can some of these for me???

    • BDW says

      Since when did “Barack Hussein” become a “Muslim name”?

      I believe that Hussein is an Arabic name and Barack is anglicized version of a Swahili word, a word found in a few languages including Semitic and non-Semitic languages, most notably Hebrew.

      And when did he change his name to Barack Hussein? His name on his birth certificate is Barack Hussein Obama, II.

      Do you think that the President is a secret Muslim??? Who was born where???

    • Dwight McKissic says

      Greg,

      President Obama accepted Christ at the Trinity Church in Chicago pastored by Jeremiah Wright. I’m fairly certain he was baptized there as well. I recall reading about him holding a Easter Service at the White House where he acknowledged that Jesus is Lord.

      I certainly am not an apologist for President Obama’s faith. My only request is(as I have said several times already on this blog), whatever criteria you use to determine whether or not Obama is a Christian, please use the exact same criteria on Nixon, Reagan, Ford, Bush 1 & 2, Carter, Clinton, and John Kennedy. If you conclude Obama is not a Christian, then all of these other Presidents who claimed to be Christians will probaly not meet the standard you apply as well.

      Dwight

      • Bart Barber says

        Agreed. And that standard, in turn, should be the same one that we use in our churches with regard to people of lesser celebrity.

      • says

        Reagan and Bush II gave a Christian confession of faith. Carter did too. Their confession was quite orthodox, although Carter and Bush II are universalists. But, as for themselves personally, they confessed Christ as Savior and looked to Him for forgiveness of sins.

        Obama has claimed that he looked to Jesus for forgiveness of sins (see the Rick Warren interview in 2008). He also claimed in September 2010 to have become a Christian by choice after trusting in Christ for forgiveness of sins and that salvation is only by the grace of God. His testimony has been rejected by many Evangelical Christians.

        The problem with Obama is his church, Trinity, is a Black Liberation church which is considered to be aberrant in its theology and in its focus on race. If a White church were to have the same views, we would rightly reject it. The only problem is that almost all Southern Baptist churches had the same basic racial views as Trinity, but from a White perspective, until around 1965, and we were pretty much okay with it.

        But, Trinity does have some pretty serious theological error. I wonder why we reject Obama’s confession that he has trusted in Christ for forgiveness of sin? Do we believe that he has trusted in the wrong Jesus like Romney has? Serious question. I am still trying to get a handle on Black Liberation Theology.

        • Dwight McKissic says

          Alan,

          “…almost all Southern Baptist churches had the same basic racial views as Trinity, but from a White perspective, until around 1965, and we were pretty much okay with it.”

          In this comment stream # 95 you said, “Playing patty-cake with Mormonism because we want access to power in the White House is a disaster.”

          These are two incredible quotes-two great take-aways–two money quotes.

          If every SBC personality had your understanding on these two quotes and your and Fred Luter’s heart and compassion for race relations–the SBC would be a radically different and better convention. May your tribe increase.

          Dwight

      • Bart Barber says

        If I hadn’t read the Falsani interview, that video would be all I would need. That’d do it.

          • cb scott says

            Alan,

            I have the book. If you want to read it, it is available. I think I may have sent it to Dwight during the last election.

          • says

            From the Falsani interview:

            Obama confesses that he trusts in Jesus for salvation of some sort. He has said this in at least two other places that I found while interacting in this thread tonight. But, here is how he explains his understanding of heaven, sin, and salvation to Falsani:

            GG:
            Do you believe in heaven?

            OBAMA:
            Do I believe in the harps and clouds and wings?

            GG:
            A place spiritually you go to after you die?

            OBAMA:
            What I believe in is that if I live my life as well as I can, that I will be rewarded. I don’t presume to have knowledge of what happens after I die. But I feel very strongly that whether the reward is in the here and now or in the hereafter, the aligning myself to my faith and my values is a good thing.

            When I tuck in my daughters at night and I feel like I’ve been a good father to them, and I see in them 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.

            GG:
            Do you believe in sin?

            OBAMA:
            Yes.

            GG:
            What is sin?

            OBAMA:
            Being out of alignment with my values.

            GG:
            What happens if you have sin in your life?

            OBAMA:
            I think it’s the same thing as the question about heaven. In the same way that if I’m true to myself and my faith that that is its own reward, when I’m not true to it, it’s its own punishment.

            __________________

            Yeah, that is a problem. But, where does Jesus fit in as saving him through his sacrificial death on the Cross? Because Obama does claim to believe that. He seems to have a mix of confession of Christ as Savior, but then a strange understanding of what sin is and how to get forgiven. Perhaps this is where the Black Liberation Theology comes in? If you read Trinity’s belief statement on their website, it is a mess.

        • Dwight McKissic says

          Bart,

          I know we’ve been down this road before. And I know that you, CB and I, don’t won’t to go down this road again, nor does David want us to travel this way. So my question is for clarity purposes only. I am not understanding your comment: “If I hadn’t read the Falsani interview, that interview would be all I would need. That’d do it.” Did this interview confirm your existing view of the President’s faith or did it cause you to view him as a Christian? Seriously and sincerely, I can’t tell by your comment what you meant.

          Dwight

          • Bart Barber says

            Dwight,

            I’m saying that the video, if that were all that there were, would be something that I would receive as a valid Christian testimony. But, as I said above, if he were coming to our church and were to give that testimony, one thing he would need to do is to explain what sin is. I don’t believe that you can have biblical repentance if you don’t have a biblical concept of sin. You don’t have to quote Garrett’s Systematic Theology or anything, but “being out of line with my values” won’t cut it.

            The primary problem with the President’s description of sin is that he characterizes it as an offense against himself rather than as an offense against God. How can a person repent to God who doesn’t see himself as having offended God?

            If a subsequent video or interview or tweet or something were to emerge in which President Obama were to correct himself in that regard, then I’d reconsider my opinion.

  20. says

    Dwight, you wrote:

    “Even Ed Stetzer and Richard Land have taken a softer view on labeling Mormonism as a cult. Why? Stetzer and Land want to label Mormonism a fourth great world religion. Why? Unbelievable!”

    Actually, that’s wrong.

    I have no problem defining Mormonism as a theological cult as I did in a story running in the Salt Lake Tribune. However, since most American don’t make the distinction between theological vs sociological cults, I think that is it is more helpful to call it another religion, distinct from Christianity. Feel free to disagree with that, but at least disagree with what I said.

    Also, I never have said that it is the fourth great religion. That is a paraphrase of what Richard Land said, not me.

    I’d appreciate you making corrections to your post to make that clear.

    Thanks,

    Ed

    • Dwight McKissic says

      Ed,

      After reading again your statement in Christianity Today, I agree that I should have made a distintion between what you said and what Richard Land said. I apologize for not having been more exact and specific regarding what you said. I did link to your statement so that persons could read and draw their own conclusions.

      My assistant will not be in until 10am tomorrow. As soon as she comes in, I’ll have her to update and correct the statement I attribute to you. Again, I apologize.

      Having recently been grossly misrepresented by the Associated Press on a story that went around the world and generated a lot of ill-will toward me, I certainly don’t want to inflict that pain on you. To the extent that I already may have, one last time: i’m sorry, please forgive me. I should have been more careful in my attributions.

      Dwight

      • says

        Dwight,

        No problem. My view has nothing to do with politics, but it has to do with evangelism. I want to reach Mormons, not just label them. However, it is a theological cult, as is Christian Science, for example.

        But, I appreciate your point here and, as I mentioned in that SLT article, I am very concerned if people try to blur the distinction between Christianity and Mormonism. I am actually writing something about that tomorrow, I think.

        No problem… and glad to have this dialogue.

        Ed

  21. says

    The comments here toward Dwight are pretty ridiculous. How about if we all get over ourselves and take the concerns of another brother to heart? I think that we can all agree that Barack Obama’s presidency has not been good for the church or for Christian values. But, why do we think that Romney’s will be? He is a definite non-Christian. He follows a false religion. His religion has racism written into its sacred texts. He denies the true Christ. Playing patty-cake with Mormonism because we want access to power in the White House is a disaster. Dwight is right.

    The other thing that Dwight is right about is how pervasive racialization is when it comes to our associations and preferences. White Southern Baptists have been feigning indignation at being called racists since around 1969. We keep wondering why everyone isn’t over it yet. I agree that most whites I know do not consciously see things through a racial lense. But, why are we so offended when a Black brother raises questions about why we are siding with someone like Romney without being honest about his religion and what it promotes?

    I am not an Obama supporter. I cannot ever vote for someone who pushes abortion. Some might label me a one-issue voter. I am not. There are other issues as well that push me into a conservative position. But, I also think that we need to have our eyes open. If you support Romney, that is fine. If you think he will do a better job leading America, that is fine too. But, don’t compromise on his religion. He doesn’t. Why should we?

    • cb scott says

      “We,” Alan?
      Obviously, you have a mouse in your pocket. You paint your “we” on every one here with a very wide brush.

      I made my position on Mitt Romney somewhere above in this comment thread.

      Frankly, in this election, as far the American populace is concerned, “Someone has taken the Caddy and left us a mule to ride.”

      Alan, when a mule is all “ya got,” you ride the mule or walk. Romney is the only ride available. It really is that simple.

      • says

        I hear you, CB. I understand the dilemma that “we” are all in. Romney is all we have. So be it.

        As for the comments toward Dwight, I am talking about those who are calling him out for talking about race. I always say “we” because when I point the finger at someone else, I am usually guilty of the same thing. It is just as easy for me to not think about how others see things as it is anyone else. But, as I read the comments of person after person jumping on Dwight for having the nerve to bring up race again, it just seemed pretty ridiculous to me. How about if we listen and discuss this with him instead of telling him we’re tired of hearing it. Oops. I said “we” again. I guess I shouldn’t. I am thankful for his perspective and I am confident that you are too. So, maybe I should say, “they” and leave you and me out of it.

        And no, I don’t have a mouse in my pocket. :)

        • cb scott says

          Alan,

          Dwight is right. There is a deep racial tension that saturates the SBC like peppers saturate Cajun food.

          I shared in one of the threads here recently about my quest to find a church to attend and how one of the men’s SS classes I attended the when the lesson material was supposed to be about Jesus and the woman at the well, it became a lament about the horror of affirmative action and why a mixed marriage is an abomination before God. BTW, this particular SS class was not a class full of red-necks and bubbas. It was a class of about thirty professional white guys, well heeled and well educated.

          My entire beef with Dwight here is exactly what it was in the last election – giving the president a pass on his faith as if it were of a biblical profession of faith. It was not and is not. He is the most anti-Christian president in the history of this nation…..and possibly the most anti-American if that means anything to some folks anymore. And, yes, it still does to me.

          • says

            Just this morning I was talking with my neighbor – a Christian and a Southern Baptist, who was bemoaning the fact that a Black family might move in on our street. He wanted to keep the street all white. We have Black families that live on the streets around us, just a block away. I guess he has taken some solace in the fact that our street is all white. I told him that I didn’t think that color mattered and the worst neighbors I ever had were a White family that lived across the street from me at my last house. He kind of sheepishly agreed and said, “You’re right. Color doesn’t matter.”

            I was surprised that he just thought that a Southern Baptist pastor would agree with him in his racist views. I didn’t and he quickly recanted. This man is a life long Southern Baptist. I wonder how many SBC pastors that he has talked to have agreed with him? I wonder how many have challenged him?

            Dwight is hitting on something that many of us don’t want to see. Leaders are compromising on Mormonism. That is a problem. But, we are also slow to expose the racial element of Mormonism, as though that is not important. It is. We should listen to what Dwight is saying here.

  22. Darren says

    When just a few weeks away from a national election, respected and well known ministries and organizations remove Mormonism from a list of religions that orthodox Christianity would classify as a cult, it is difficult for me to see this as anything other than a move toward political expediency at aimed at helping a preferred conservative get elected.

    Jehovah’s Witness, Scientology, Christian Science, Mormonism all teach a different Jesus… do they not? I don’t see listing Mormonism as a cult as labeling people, but labeling a teaching. If it is a theological cult, what’s the problem in calling that. It’s not like calling it a false religion is going to be better accepted or understood by the unbelieving world that cannot bear witness to spiritual truth anyway.
    It’s just hard for me to see the move of the BGEA (and others) as anything other than an unhelpful compromise that will confuse the general population, rather than an effort to improve evangelism.

  23. volfan007 says

    Let me tell yall about a very courageous, man of God. His name is Ed Campbell. He is a white man. He was Pastoring a Church in Philadelphia, MS back in the day when those civil rights workers were killed by the KKK. In fact, one of the men, who did the killing, was his next door neighbor. Also, 2 of his Deacons were KKK members. He didnt know it, but they were.

    Well, Bro. Ed was elected to serve on the school board, and desegregation hit that part of MS. Bro. Ed was for it….took a stand….faced this giant with his faith squarely in God to help him do the right thing. And, as you can imagine, he suffered much headache and heartache, because of it. He was threatened. His family was threatened. But, with God’s help, Ed Campbell and his family did what was right.

    Now, to understand how things were back then…in the South….just watch “The Help,” or “Mississippi Burning.” That’s the world that Ed Campbell lived in. But, this courageous, man of God…a white man in the South…in the 1960’s. Of course, in most of the movies, which I’ve seen Hollywood make, they never show the white people in the South, who stood for what’s right. They tend to make most people look like redneck bigots, who either belonged to the KKK, or else they secretly wished they could. But, there were many white people in the South, who didnt belong to the KKK, and they courageously took such stands.

    Thank God for the Ed Campbell’s.

    David

  24. Cathy M. says

    Thank you for explaining so well why Black Christians would vote for President Obama. I really believed it was only because of race, but I can see how the justice issues would be important. We all are compromising, yes, to a certain degree.

    I have really been struggling with how I will cast my vote in this election. I am looking closely at Jeremiah 29:7 as I ponder this. Blessings!

  25. Jim Lockhart says

    Brother McKissic,
    Sorry I came to the discussion late but I was away from home at a granddaughter’s birthday in Texas (I live in Oklahoma).

    As I read the comments, I kept coming back to conclusions I made a long time ago. When we talk about politics, all we talk about are our politics; when we talk about national events involving “race” (e.g. Trayvon Martin), all we seem to want to talk about are the lenses (e.g. stereotypes, biases, worldviews) through which we see things. At some point, if we are to bridge the so-called “racial divide” within the church (if the not the larger community), what are we to do?

    I ask the questions because we seem see things profoundly differently. For example, you wrote:

    1. “Black Christians tend to compromise their faith on pro-life and gay rights issues in order to vote for the party that they perceive will best deliver social and economic justice. The White evangelical church in this election is willing to compromise their beliefs on Mormonism and racial and gender accountability in order to support Mitt Romney. Black and White Christians vote for the party and the president that they perceive will best empower them. They simply view empowerment and priorities differently.”

    First, I do not see either candidate as someone I can necessarily vote for. Neither are Christians (yes, I understand your position) and both come in with significant negatives: For Romney it is his Mormonism including the awful racial aspects which he has not repudiated; for Obama it is the fact that his only plan seems to be spend and hope something happens while closely watching the polls to find out what his next position is going to be (also called, being “Clintonesque”) all the while fragmenting the American people in order to create Democratic dependencies. I might add that I cannot see myself voting for Obama because he proclaimed to the Mohammedan world that my Lord and Savior is merely a subservient functionary in the Mohammedan pantheon of prophets (Cairo speech: his example of Isra coupled with his use of “peace be upon them” after naming Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed) which I see as patently offensive to me as a Christian. It is not the job of the President of the United States to tell Mohammedans anything about our “religions” and suggest we are somehow related or on equal terms. The President can certainly say we are country that respects religious thought and expression but I do not think the President ought to speak out in the area of comparative religion. So my dilemma is the same as yours: who should I vote for – or not? I can either lay my vote aside or vote for the one whom believe might help our country. I have not decided yet because, as you point out, I will have to compromise and I have never had to do that in a Presidential election.

    Second, I am not looking for empowerment; I am looking for liberty. For example, I oppose the new healthcare act because I believe government will use it to chill liberty (who are you going to vote for if you have cancer and the Democratic Party promises “free” health care? – or if government decides who gets treatment – and it will – government appropriates for itself the power of life or death). I do not believe government acts charitably or takes care of people well; only people, acting under the influence and power of love, can create the non-governmental institutions and means to provide for themselves well. I realize government, through law, has a stake in a “level playing field” in terms of wise regulation of an otherwise harsh and greedy system of prosperity (in our case, the capitalist system) to mitigate its excesses and at least temper the fire of greed (e.g. the Securities Act of 1934). However, I want a government that stays within the confines set up for it in the Constitution which means, for example, no redress of so-called income equality by income redistribution, no provision of venture capital (e.g. Solyndra), and no restraints on the free exercise of my religion (i.e. requiring Southern Baptists who might own business to pay for contraceptive, abortificents, and sterilizations or trying to limit the free exercise of religion to merely the “right to worship”).

    Third, I do not vote for “social and economic justice” because I do not know what it means since it seems to mean many things to many people. For example, if the polls are right, social justice for Hispanics merely means legalization and/or amnesty (which, by the way, I support). I tend to define social justice in terms of providing equal opportunity (i.e. good public schools for all followed by unfettered paths to career preparation and then equal access to jobs where merit prevails). To me social justice is communitarian based on the idea that we all have gifts and we ought to be able to find the gifts, nurture them, and then exercise them in meaningful work. I do not believe government can deliver it apart from providing good educational opportunities and proper law (e.g. no discrimination based on ethnicity, color, religion, etc. and the creation of governmental means to enforce the law like the EEOC and the courts). True social justice arises from the essential insight (flowing from love) that we are all children of God and we owe each other the modicum of respect, encouragement, and ability to move freely and without artificial constraints (like race, for example) through life. I appreciate that sin stifles love and that government should act, again through law, to mitigate sin, but law and its enforcement can never change people like Jesus can. And I do not want government to try since it will do so without any reference to God (e.g. the current debate over same-sex marriage).

    2. “If President Obama wins, I will take solace in the fact that Republicans will not be rewarded for their blatant disrespect of President Obama. Such as shouting “you lie” to him from the hall of Congress; the Governor of Arizona shaking her finger in his face; Laura Ingram referring to the President as, “you fool”; and I could cite many more disrespectful and racial attitudes and actions displayed toward President Obama, including declassifying Mormonism as a cult.”

    I am not sure what you mean by “blatant disrespect” Similar statements like the ones you mentioned, ones even harsher, have been leveled at politicians for years (and, after all, President Obama is just that: a politician pursuing an agenda of power for his world view) and that has never been an issue before. Democrats have been particularly unkind in their remarks (remember George W. Bush being shown as a Nazi or the many bumper stickers for “No Mo’Ron” against Ronald Reagan). I have also heard black commentators on television (and I do, try to avoid television commentators – it is why I no longer have cable) say that calling President Obama “inexperienced” was some sort of racial code for something or other. By the way, I also think President Obama has been foolish in a number of decisions so what is wrong with saying that if we are seeking some sort of equality?

    I can give other examples, but my point is simply to lay out my side of the divide for purposes of illustration. All I sense in this ongoing discussion is just more talk on each side of the divide. I appreciate the power of memory and the cruelty of past de jure racism, the insidiousness of de facto racism, and what I am beginning to sense is a sort of crippling sensitivity that silences rather than illuminates. But something more has to be done then just point out the divide every once in a while which the comments seem to point out. I know that was not your intent and it is helpful when you speak. But again, the comments all seem to converge to the same point and we need to find a new way to talk. The sad piece of my memory is that we no longer have those who speak openly and well about the chasm between us and who then incite us to follow our better angels. It still hurts, after so many years, to have heard the voices, and then seen the voices, of Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy stilled. We have had no one since – including any of the occupants of the White House.

    You have been a both a clear and a brave voice in showing the width of the divide. I, for one, understand your position in regard to Mitt Romney and we all know the divide exists. What do we need to do to bridge the divide in such a way that it starts from both sides and meets somewhere in the middle?

    Your brother in Christ,
    Jim Lockhart

    • Dwight McKissic says

      Jim,

      I remember you from a previous discussion. Great question regarding, where do we go from here to bridge the divide? I have a three fold answer: (1) Prayer. I know it sounds trite but the Bible tells us to pray about all things. (2) The ERLC of the SBC ought to commission or empanel a group of Black/White/Asian/Hispanic believers to develop a strategy and educational program desihned to adddress and bridge the racial divide.(You would make a great panel member if this idea ever take route.) (3) There is a interracial group forming to look at identifying a Presidential candidate that would have wide spread appeal to all Christians regardless of color. This approach I think is healthy and could lead toward bridging the racial divide.

      • Jim Lockhart says

        Brother Dwight,

        I like your suggestions. Prayer is especially effective because it moves us out of our perspectives and allows us to see things as God sees them. God does view it differently. As for the ERLC you are absolutely right: we, as the church, need to find a way to speak and teach about it, at least among ourselves in ways that bring us together. It can be done but we have to do it and the ways you suggest are a great start. It is simply not enough to say we have president of this or that color; we need something that emanates from the Holy Spirit and that allows for talking from both sides of the divide. If asked, I would serve and I know there are others (like Dave Miller) who would also be willing to serve and who would serve us well. As for the group considering a presidential candidate, I have long believed the present party structure is too limited and partisan. I know there are a lot of people like me who find themselves identified with a party with which we are not in full agreement. There is a lot of ground that good Christians (and well meaning Americans) can occupy outside of the current view of politics as akin to war. I have come to the conclusion that we are past due for a new political party. We just need leadership and a place to begin finding out who we are and what we are about.

        Now the “kicker”: how do we get the SBC to move and what if the SBC doesn’t move? I am not denominationally situated (meaning I am not in the employ of Southern Baptists or ordained) so I do not know how to go about it. There are channels, associations, and constituencies that I know nothing about but others do. Any suggestions beyond going to the Convention and trying to get a resolution passed?

        Jim

        • Dwight McKissic says

          Jim,

          Since Dave is one of the vice presidents of the SBC, it sounds like a good question for him: how do we get the SBC to move on this issue?

  26. says

    Dwight,

    1. “Black Christians tend to compromise their faith on pro-life and gay rights issues in order to vote for the party that they perceive will best deliver social and economic justice…”

    Are you saying that “Economic Justice” trumps “Black Christians” Faith and Values?

    Help me out a little here… Just what is “Economic Justice” and just how do you see Obama and the Democrat Party delivering it to the Black Community? As far as that goes… is “Economic Justice” something only the Black Community is entitled to?

    • Dwight McKissic says

      Greg,

      Martin Luther King often quoted the verse in Amos: “Let justice roll down like water, and righteousness as a mighty stream.” Luke 4: 16-21 comes to mind where Jesus clearly expressed that his ministry had a message for the poor and the oppressed. That kind of language resonates with a people who have been racially and economically systemically oppressed.”Economic Justice” is a faith value of Black people.

      By economic justice I mean equal pay for equal work; access to government jobs and contracts; opportunities for promotions not restricted by color or gender; fair lending and banking practices; non-discrimination in access to housing etc. The fact that you would ask this question–which is a good thing–indicates that Black voters and White voters are thousands of miles apart with regard to voting decision and considerations. The Lily Ledbetter case is probably the most recent example of discrimination that explains the differences in voting patterns. The way Romney responds to the Lily Ledbetter question underscores why oppressed people trust the Democrats on this question and not the Republican. For historically oppressed people, these are considered just as much of a faith, moral, and life issue as abortion and homosexuality. As a matter of fact these issues are prioritized–affirmative action for instance–because they impact the quality of life for the living. All people are entitled to economic justice. Historically, only White males had unfettered access to it. Keep in mind most Black voters over 45-50 years of age have fresh vivid memories of having experienced or their parents economic injustice on their jobs. Mt mother earned half the pay as her Anglo public school teacher counterparts made for the same work. The fear is if the government did not enforce or practice economic justice, the American work force in high level jobs would look just like the SBC high level paying jobs–all White males. Therein lies the concern for economic justice. Hope this helps.

      Dwight

      • says

        Dwight,

        Being 48 years “young” I guess I missed out on this whole economic injustice thing… Me and my best friend in high school (who was black) got paid the same amount for working our buts off at the mill after school each day.

        Anyway, do you think the Black Community really thinks that Romney and the Republicans will usher in a new age of Racial discrimination in work place? I just don’t see it…

        And when do you think the Black Community will be able to put the past behind them and move forward? Are we one, two, three generations away from this? Will it ever happen? What will it take for us to achieve Martin Luther King’s dream of a color blind society?

        I probably want badger you any more on this… as the whole issue is just depressing to me. Race relations in this nation were not improved by the election of Obama, and in fact are far worse.

        Grace for the Journey,

        • Dwight McKissic says

          Greg,

          The issue is, could you and your Black high school friend been treated the same if you all had stayed with that company and tried to advance to the top? That’s where statistics and history show minorities are treated differently.

          Historically, the Republicans have been less willing to provide the level of a safety net that the Democrats have been willing to provide. The Republicans generally oppose affirmative action. Many Republicans oppose the Lily Ledbetter act which is a travesty. Judges appointed by Democrats tend to render more favorable rulings to minorities when the matters are ajudicated, therefore, minorities vote for the party that they believe looks out for their best interest.

          We will only get behind this when a coalition is formed that will meet each other in the middle on these issues, with compromising on the biblical values of pro-life issues and gay rights issues being non-negotiable. Small government? As one Bible believing, bona- fide conservative Black brother said to me: show me that in the Bible. That my friend is where the battle ground is.

          • Rob Ayers says

            But Dwight…

            What small government has ever required believers to say “Caesar is Lord?” It seems that every governing philosophy ever envisioned that has enforced communalism seen itself as “greater than thou” – I could name off a grand number of examples. I find it interesting that the “Big Government” party removed the lone reference to God in its platform documents. When government becomes big, history has shown government then becomes God.

            Rob

          • Dwight McKissic says

            Rob,

            If the vast majority of believers who don’t support abortion and gay-marriage, of all stripes, can find enough common ground on the justice and small–big government divide–we will experience a change in our body politic unprecedented, and one that has the potential to represent the Kingdom of God–without calling it that. Hopefully, the frustration over this election will begin to lead toward that end.

          • Rob Ayers says

            Your answer Dwight has a messianic flavor – the same flavor when then Senator Obama said that if elected that history would conclude that at that moment would be the beginning of the trend that the seas would start to recede and the planet would begin to heal :-(

            I am glad you clarified your “Kingdom of God” comment. Only Jesus Himself can bring Shalom to our broken world of sin. But then again that may be the pre-millenial in me. You have a lot more faith in the human condition than I ever could hold. :-)

            As you have said previously, it is not just mere justice or small/big government divide that chasms us. I am more than willing to concede my lack of empathy and understanding. With respect, are you willing to concede some of your victimization? However with a government debt of 16 trillion, I don’t see how either of us will like whatever result lies ahead.

            Rob

          • says

            Because they, along with people who have sense and the Apostle Paul, believe that people who are perfectly able but too lazy to work for a living shouldn’t be fed, clothed, and housed with money taken from the pockets of people who are willing to work for a living.

          • says

            Not all those who depend on government assistance as “too lazy to work.” Some work very hard for many hours yet are paid wages so low that they still need and qualify for help.

          • Frank L. says

            That may be with a minority. What ever happened to working two or three jobs instead of a hanout?

          • says

            Frank: I have had several times in my life, when I worked two jobs. There was one period, when I worked two jobs and went to school too. The problem with that kind of labor is that you violate the laws of God about abusing the body He has given you. There is also the reality of economic justice, of pay too low for the work demanded, pay which is insufficient for anything more that mere survival. There are those employers who, if left unchecked, would gladly enslave the workers or leave them with little or nothing for their efforts. A friend of mine once sought to help a Black man in Georgia get off of a tenant farm, where the Landlord held him bound with debt. My friend raised the money, had a deputy sheriff present when the Black man paid off the landlord, got a receipt, and then they went and moved the Black man to a better situation. The landlord vowed to my friend, “I will get you for this.” Less than two years later, the church where my friend was serving fired him. I admire your willingness to work Frank and have done the same myself on a least three separate occasions, including one which lasted for three years, a bi-vocational minister. I can remember passing out at night as soon as my head hit the pillow, but our families pay for such effort in neglect of children, wife, and other responsibilities.

          • Frank L. says

            If back breaking work violates God’s laws then two thirds of the world’s people are ungodly.

            Only in America would one make such a statement.

          • says

            Frank L: That statement of yours is not exactly kind. I certainly was not saying that people who have to work like that to stay alive are ungodly. I was simply saying that it breaks natural rules/laws or whatever you want to call them for the body. I remember working to the point of exhausting, to the point where I saw a halo around every light and was terribly irritable. I also remember working so hard on the farm, when I was about 10-12 years of age, for a couple of days that I wound up sick in bed for three days (not a thing a boy at that age likes at all. What really bothers me is the seeming lack of compassion and concern and caring for the working person. After all, there is a harshness and a severity that God detests. He also said the laborer is worthy of his hire, and I have known of too many cases across the years where people worked others for barely enough pay to survive or worse. So I must ask you: Where is the sympahty and compassion a Christian is called on to exercise for those in dire straits?

          • Frank L. says

            Dr J. How is it unkind to point out your whining only plays in America.

            I’m not being unsympathetic. I’m being realistic. Life is hard for many, in fact most people. You must do what you have to do.

          • says

            Frank L.: My! I seem to have elicited your cruelty streak. You remind me of my childhood friend’s old dog that tore a plug out of my thigh, but I forgave him as he tore a plug out of both thighs of a fellow who was my enemy. You must be a weak, knock kneed pushover with no vitality, if you have not the mild of human kindness in your breast. Only the weak and folks suffering from control problems (they got to control everything and force it conform to their expectations) with hold sympathy for the underdog. It is call a pathology, a sociopathic thing. Tsk! Tsk! Tsk!

          • Frank L. says

            Dr. J. I hope you are not intending to charge me for your psychiatric analysis.

            Why you feel compelled to make this personal, I really don’t know. Why you think you know whether I am kind or not, I really don’t care.

            Calling me sociopathic pretty much goes over the line it seems to me. How about we just agree not to engage one another rather than resort to such a nasty analysis of someone you know not.

          • says

            Frank L., you went over the line in accusing me of whining, when I spoke up for the working poor. Jess mentioned what it had cost him to follow the path you are approving. I never saw any ounce of compassion on your part. Are just cruel to the nth degree. I once listed the different kinds of work I had done in my life up to that point (1989 or ’90). It was a grand total of 135 different kinds of jobs. When I was 15 or 16 I worked in a meet cooler that a number of men in their thirties could not take (lugging hindquarters and forequarters on one’s shoulder from the cooler to the truck and from the truck to the refrigerator car) (weight anywhere from 400-700 lbs, depending on the size of the steer). They told us that we had to drop the quarters, if we got it too soon or too late, because it could break your back. The demand that employers treat their workers humanly came from Christians who opposed the abuse of workers and advocated a living wage. The unions arose, in part, I suspect

          • Frank L. says

            That’s a nice story but has nothing to do with advocating welfare as a family business.

            You make charges with no evidence and defend it with a story with no relevance.

            I have always assumed you were a stand up guy who loves people and loves The Lord.

            I’ll just leave it at that

            God bless

          • says

            Frank L.: You do rattle. You might want to consider the aid to a
            Black woman in Chicago and her son. He went on to become the leading peditrician neurosurgeon at John Hopkins Med. Center, Dr. Ben Cross (I think that is his name), who also speaks out against abortion. And then you ignore Mr. Alford;s remarks about how much such labor had cost him. I thought you were suppose to be Christian and have compassion. What you migh not realize is that there are no jobs left for our children and the masses of Southern Baptists in the future, due to three things: automation, computerization, and robotics. The folks who run things are working onplans to kill off 5.5 billion people. Your blessings seem slightly more ironic than irenic.

          • says

            Frank L. :When you needle someone, your blessing hardly seems gracious. Personally, I do not like to get involved in such give and take. It is such a waste of time. While we are discussing a matter, how about replying direct on the issue. I mentioned, for example, Bro. Alford’s injuries due to such labors, and you never commented on it. In teaching, especially with reference to an issue, one is taught to stick to the subject, not make asides which are distractions, intentionally or note, which divert attention afrom the issue and its resolution.

          • says

            The problem with that kind of labor is that you violate the laws of God about abusing the body He has given you.

            Oh give me a break. If I need to work more to take care of my family better, by gosh I’ll take another job and God will not count that as a sin. That is utter foolishness.

            There is also the reality of economic justice, of pay too low for the work demanded, pay which is insufficient for anything more that mere survival.

            Not all jobs are intended to provide a living. It is not economicly unjust, except in the minds of liberals, for someone to work a 40 hour week and not have enough money to make ends meet. You know what that should do? Motivate you to find another job, go back to school, or take extra work to make ends meet. If a place is really paying substandard wages, if enough people leave and they can’t operate, they’ll raise the pay. I’ve seen it happen.

          • says

            Not all those who depend on government assistance as “too lazy to work.” Some work very hard for many hours yet are paid wages so low that they still need and qualify for help.

            And it’s fine for them to be helped. But they shouldn’t expect nor should they be given the best there is to get of anything. Health care? County health clinics? If it’s really bad (cancer) some doctor, hospital, or church should donate what is needed. Food? Some lady came in a Papa John’s that I managed. She was obviously poor. Told me “Man, I sure do need a pizza.” I offered to take money out of my pocket and buy her a 12 pack of water, a loaf of bread, a pack of lunch meat, and some banannas. She snorted indignantly “Humph, well nevermind then”. People who are on government assistance should realize they’re nont going to be able to buy pizzas, McD’s, and other stuff. They don’t deserve a break today. Feed them fruits, vegitables, whole grains, and clean water. Healthier anyway.

            If they want better, they can earn better. But don’t come crying to me that it’s ok to vote Democrat because they offer better handouts and expect an ounce of sympathy when infants are being slaughtered.

          • Christiane says

            especially for the sake of their children . . . people will do anything for their children, even go on foodstamps . . .

            God bless the men of our country who started the Food Stamp program.
            So many children will be able to eat tonight, as a result.

          • cb scott says

            L’s,

            It is not true that “people will do anything for their children.”

            If that were true, people who embrace false religions, live ungodly lives, are unfaithful to their spouses, will not work for a living, lie, cheat, and steal at every opportunity, upon hearing the biblical gospel, would abandon their false religion and repent of sin and believe the biblical gospel.

            The fact is, a great number of people, in this country, will not do anything for their children.

            L’s, have you, as of yet, repented and believed the biblical gospel and abandoned a false religion?

          • says

            Joe, while there are people who love to get handouts and don’t want to work, the big problem we are facing today is that there are no jobs for three very big reasons. One, automation. Two, computerization. Three, robotics. About Jan. ’91, I wrote an evaluation of some materials provided by the Vocational Director of the County School System in which I was employed as an Industry Education Coordinator (a governmental term for career counselor, I suppose). What she provided from a Conference on Jobs which she had attended was quite hard to swallow. The problem was this: There would be no jobs in the future for our children. The materials showed the automation of a fast food place (then one of the chief employers for people in America), a 24/7 operation employing 400 people, that went to 20 people, only two of which received a decent salary, while the other 18 were clean up crew and obviously slated for the bottom of the scale pay. The materials also told of two automobile factories in Japan that had only 60-80 technicians to keep them running to produce automobiles. The Japanese closed them down, because they put too many people out of work. A plant that produced clamps for the hoses on Ford automobiles was automated and went from 350 employees to about 75, while improving production and profit, but unemploying 275 people. That was 21 years ago. If you noticed that the auto assembly lines shone on television in the past several years had few workers and mostly flying robotic arms doing the work, you will grasp the reality that the worker is less in demand than ever. Add the items above, the sending of jobs overseas, and you will find a great effort on the part of employers to rid themselves of expensive labor costs, but, basically in the process, destroying the middle class and setting us on a course fraught with great perils. There are no jobs worth talking about today, and those that are available are hardly capable of sustaining a viable future for the individual and/or his family.

          • Jake Barker says

            Doc J,
            Autos are my speciality. The reason for robotics? Everytime union contracts up for re-negotiation human workers screw thing up on purpose to get the manufacturers to conclude negotiations to the unions favor, much fewer sabotage events when union happy. Robotics just want a little lube job every now and then and maybe an updated software program. Proof look at GM in 1977, warranty costs through the roof, conclude negotiations to union favor, warranty costs return to normal albeit too high.

          • says

            Jake my mentioning of robotics had nothing to do with unions. It was the fact that they take away jobs. Robotics, computers, and automation, all have produced a situation where jobs are going to be scare as hen’s teeth. And some folks don’t want the folks around that use to do the jobs now down by the above. Think carefully.

          • Bill Mac says

            And yet we cannot un-invent robots and automation. Companies that stand on principal and use human labor instead of cheaper, more efficient and more effective automation will gain accolades for the short time that they remain in business, and then those people will be out of work anyway. It is the same with outsourcing/offshoring. We can’t make the world a bigger place once more.

          • says

            So what do you do with the excess population? Do what the question asked that my son at the age of 11 encountered on the computer at a school trying to recruit him in 1983? The question was: “If you had an over-population problem with a country in Africa, how would you handle it: a. Have a war and kill them off? b.Use an infectious agent, germ or disease and kill them off? c. Let them starve?” Our son did not want to go to the school, and we did not like it either. Please observe all three answers are at work in a number of those countries in Africa, and the same is going on in America. The same question was posed on a State Dept. Exam taken in the ’60s by a friend of mine at the Univ. of NC, CH.

    • says

      will best deliver social and economic justice…”
      But Dwight,

      A few weeks back you made this HUGE production about how social and economic justice is not to be equated with left-wing government handouts and how I was SOOOOOO wrong to DARE suggest that’s what you meant. So which is it?

      • Dwight McKissic says

        Joe,

        Would you be specific as to what I’ve stated that support your contention that I’ve contradicted myself? Are you suggesting by the quote “will best deliver social and economic justice” that Republicans have absolutely no commitment to social and economic justice? Are you suggesting that Republicans are against any handouts at all? In order for me to address your concerns I need you to be very clear as to what specifically–by referencing a full sentence or thought of mine–that you are charging me with being inconsistent with. Thus far you have stated absolutely nothing that contradicts any statement that I’ve made. Please point out a statement of contradiction?

        • Dwight McKissic says

          Rob and Joe,

          Much of what I say here, # 123 is not necessarily representing my sentiments. I am attempting to convey the sentiments of those who historically vote Democratic. Inasmuch as the last time I voted for a Democrat was in 1980 for President Jimmy Carter, I obviously don’t fully embrace those sentiments, but I fully understand those who do, and respect their viewpoint, and how they arrived at their viewpoint. It is easy for those who were not “victimized” to talk about “letting go of victimization.”

          Should not the victim have a say-so in the matter of letting go? I was in no wise attempting to convey a victimization message. I was simply expressing historical reality in an effort to explain why Blacks vote Democratic and still have emotional and psychological scars scars that are fresh and real that drives them to the party that they best perceive will not ask them to get over their emotional scars, but rather seek to heal them.

          • Rob Ayers says

            For the record I did say “some” of the victimization. I conceded my lack of empathy and understanding yet you glossed over that. My attempt was that “compromise” you say you seek, but do you really?

            A friend of mine was in a terrible accident which left him partially disabled. Rehabilitation would take a painful ride, which in the beginning both mentally and physically he was unwilling to do. He preferred that everyone feel sorry for him, and do everything for him that he could not/would not do for himself. His physical therapist thankfully was of another mind. The therapist was not being unkind or unsympathetic. He saw the pain and suffering that my friend was experiencing and would experience in the future – and while he did not understand the pain personally, he had shared it with countless other patients he had worked with. He also knew that my friends “healing” would not come through a Bamby-pamby approach. He forced my friend to fend for himself – he poked him when my friend felt sorry for himself and did not want to go on. My friend at first hated him, and often requested that another therapist be given to him. After a while, my friend saw the light – he understood that the therapist was not being mean-spirited or had it in against people with injuries – in fact the therapist was working in order that my friend become independent once again. In the process, my friend worked through his issues, his scars and pain, and was free again. He attributed his healing to the grace of God, and to a therapist who did not allow him to swim in mediocrity or allow his patient to become a victim to his circumstances.

            “Should not the victim have a say-so in the matter of letting go?” Only if the victim desires to be free. Often times it has to come from those who frankly did not go through what the victim went through, but can see the problems the victim has owned for himself and how destructive it is. Ultimately the victim must release their frustrations to Jesus – the true victim of injustice who bore the shame, though innocent, on the cross.

            In other words brother, I don’t see how the Democratic party are helping people of color by healing their emotional scars. I see them picking the wounds, furthering people into dependency, and keeping them in bondage to their frustrations and misery. Will people actually be healed of the past in this way, or will they perpetually hold on to their bitterness and anger even longer?
            What would Jesus say? “Come to me you who are heavy laden and I will give you rest.”

            Rob

          • says

            The tough approach works in some cases. The hardest part is to recognize those who will be even more ruined by it as in blown away. It is sort of like the freudian and ta boys back in the 60s and 70s. They leaned heavily, and they also used it for their own agendas (as in sex) and it blew up on them in court cases. It is like the realization that EDM can help with PTSD.

          • says

            It is easy for those who were not “victimized” to talk about “letting go of victimization.”

            Cry me a river. When I found out my wife was pregnant with our daughter, I was working a dead end job. I knew I couldn’t do for my child like I wanted to. We were barely treading water, but since it was just us, we were not too worried.

            So, I did this crazy thing. I went back to school so I could get a better job. Imagine that!!! Now we’re not rich by any stretch but the bills get paid, food gets bought, clothes are on our backs, and we have a roof over our heads. And I WORK for that. And anyone who wants a better life for themselves, baring having ruined their lives with drugs or criminal convictions, can WORK and have a better life too. Instead, they choose to play the Victim card “Oh, I can’t get ahead because The Man is always bringing me down”. Boo frreakin’ hoo

          • says

            Joe: don’t be so hard on the victims, unless you have been one. We all need a helping hand now and then. I have worked in welfare in two states. There are those who would do anything to get on and stay on. There are those who want only a helping hand, and that is the poor who have some biblical and Christian background. But face the fact Joe. The Candidates ain’t telling you the truth. Jobs are scarce as hen’s teeth until we find a new way to put people to work, give them jobs that have meaning and purpose and an opportunity to succeed. Robotics, computerization, and automation have taken away the jobs….along with shipping them overseas,

  27. Jess Alford says

    Dwight McKissic,

    I would like you thoughts on this issue. Four years ago the people of this country were so angry at the Republican party, and President Bush a change had to be made. So we now have our first black President.

    President Obama is doing a wonderful job with the economy. When the President came into office the economy was worse than anyone imagined. The Republicans fought against the President tooth and toenail. The economy improved despite the Republican efforts to make the President look bad. I know you Republicans are up in arms right about now, but it’s true.

    So we find ourselves looking at another Presidental race. Do we re-elect someone that is fixing the economy, and providing insurance for the poor?
    Do we re-elect someone that is going to protect Social Security and Medicare? Do we re-elect someone that is going to stand for the middle class working people of this country, and the poor?

    Moderate Mitt doesn’t have an idea what he stands for. He will say anything to get elected President. I cannot believe anything he says.

    What is different now than it was four years ago? We are deeper in debt, true. But the economy is on the rise, and more people are working, this is true. Insurance companies can’t do us anyway they want, This is also true.

    Four years ago people looked over abortion and gay rights for the sake of the economy. What has changed now?

    • Bart Barber says

      Could you come to our food pantry this Thursday and tell all of our unemployed folks how wonderful the economy is? We need President Obama to treat the poor well: There sure are a lot more of them since he took office.

    • Dwight McKissic says

      Jess,

      If I were going to cast a vote for President it would be for President Obama. My reasoning would not necessarily be based on the reasons you gave, between those two personalities my instincts(guts) simply trusts President Obama more-so than Mitt Romney, and it has nothing to do with color. I hope I answered your question. If not, let me know and I will try again.

  28. Jess Alford says

    I didn’t say the economy was wonderful, I said the President was doing a wonderful job with it, he is making it better.

  29. Jess Alford says

    Bart Barber

    You know what shape this country was in when the President took office.
    The economy was still going down hill for a while after he manned the helm. Now things are beginning to pick up. You should be happy.

    • Bart Barber says

      I’ve studied every economic downturn since the Panic of 1837. We’ve faced much worse economic situations before in our past. The President has not managed to bring about economic recovery any more quickly than it seems to happen naturally…and it STILL hasn’t happened.

      That, in and of itself, wouldn’t make me judge him harshly. People act like the President can just make a speech or change a policy and suddenly people have jobs…as though my own economic destiny has nothing to do with how early I go to work on Monday morning and how hard I work when I get there.

      What makes me judge him harshly is that although the damaged economy has almost fared just about as well under Obama as it has under any other mediocre president in our history facing a similar situation, the other presidents didn’t spend four trillion dollars to “stimulate” the economy. As the economy goes, he’s the most expensive president in our history. As the economy goes, he should be giving us the best performance in our history. And yet, although he has bankrupted our country and saddled our children’s children with burdensome debt to do so, if everything goes just right, he might make it to the middle of the pack.

      • BDW says

        For what it’s worth, previous presidents in economic turmoil generally had the benefit of a cooperating Congress. The New Deal was one heckuva stimulus, btw. And for much of the New Deal, FDR had both parties on his side. It was the Supreme Court that was his enemy.

        Also, it’s completely asinine to act like Republicans do not share serious burden to our nation’s fiscal struggles. TWO WARS, Dr. Barber.

        If we’re in the business of being objective, then we’ll probably admit that neither party nor any politician has served as well over the last decade. Placing the blame solely on a President who did have a mostly cooperative Congress for less than 2 years is just silly.

        I’ll add by saying that when I vote for President Obama for the fourth time, I know what I’m getting. When all you conservatives vote for Mr. Willard Mitt Romney, you don’t know what you’re getting. And that’s the truth.

        To be honest, as a Democrat, I’m not terribly frightened by a Romney presidency. I don’t agree with some of the fear that Stephanie Cutter and others are selling about Romney because I don’t think the guy has any real convictions.

        He’ll get his 100 days. He’ll give conservatives some Executive Orders that they like. Then, when it’s crunch time and he’s getting bullied by Eric Cantor and the Tea Party, chaos will ensue. Romney will become pragmatic and be concerned about his legacy. He’ll move to that middle in order to get stuff done and get re-elected. He’ll warm up to gay groups and if he gets a Supreme Court nominee, he’ll go for the centrist judge who won’t have an opinion on Roe and no record on that issue to speak of.

        • Bart Barber says

          I agree, Aaron. The question before us, not raised by me, was whether President Obama had done a wonderful job with our economy. He hasn’t. Neither did President Bush. And I suspect that Romney, if he’s elected (and I’m not convinced that he will be), will perform as President in PRECISELY the manner that you have predicted.

        • says

          BDW: When one outfit controls both parties, you really don’t get much of a change. Socialism is still socialism whether it be that of Fascism or Communism. You probably would have enjoyed (?) studying under one of the leading theorists for world communism as I did (?) about 45 years ago.

        • Frank L. says

          “””When I vote for Obama for the fourth time””””

          Do you mean in this election?

          Democrat: never let dying keep you from voting

          • BDW says

            This will be the fourth time that I select the box next to Barack Obama’s name, press the Cast Ballot button and receive my free sticker afterwards.

            Although this will be only the second time that I cast my vote for Obama at the Hewitt Church of Christ. The first two times I cast my vote for Obama at the First Baptist Church of Hewitt.

        • Rob Ayers says

          Two wars supported by a bi-partisan Congress and (at the time) a majority of the American people, done so as an aftermath to the hijacking of four airplanes and the consequences of the same – I at least thought that Afghanistan was a war the Democrats supported Aaron, though I might be wrong there :-). Republicans are not the only ones to “blame” for the economic consequences for “two wars.” But we CAN totally blame the Democratic Party for the economic abyss for the last four years – of which the two main drivers of our debt problem (Stimulus and Obama-care) did not receive one Republican vote. If one wants to find the source of political animosity these days, the root of it can be found in the bullheaded decisions of a Democratic Congress 2009-2010.

          Rob

          • Bart Barber says

            Rob,

            It wasn’t just the wars. President Bush’s major expansion of Medicare has contributed to our debt problem.

            As for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, I’ll frame my opinion according to Just War doctrine:

            1. Just authority: President Bush did have the authority to prosecute these wars.
            2. Just cause: As you have accurately noted, the 9/11 attacks constitute just cause to prosecute a war against somebody, so long as it is the correct somebody. That covers Afghanistan. With regard to Iraq, this all hinges on whether just cause existed for the First Gulf War. Saddam Hussein refused to honor the terms of the cease-fire from that war. If that war’s beginning was just and if the terms of its ending were just, then there was just cause to go to war over Hussein’s refusal to honor those terms.
            3. Just intention: Left-wing silliness about oil or imperialism notwithstanding, I do not believe that America’s intention in prosecuting these wars has been primarily economic or racial. The intention in Afghanistan has been to defeat those who attacked America, facilitated that attack, or are partnered with those who did so—to end terrorist training in Afghanistan. In Iraq, the intention was to have an Iraqi regime that was in compliance with international directives regarding chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons.
            4. Last resort: I confess, I really don’t know how to evaluate the Afghan war in terms of this requirement. With regard to Iraq, it is pretty clear that, after negotiation for years and after years of periodic Iraqi hostility against aircraft enforcing the no-fly zone, Saddam Hussein simply was not going to comply with the terms of the cease-fire from the first Gulf War.
            5. Proportionality: The doctrine of proportionality requires that the ends achieved by the war be appropriate to the means employed and the costs required. I personally think there’s a problem here. After we leave Afghanistan, how surprised will you be (let’s be honest with ourselves) if you read that terrorists are training in Afghanistan to attempt another terrorist attack on American soil? What have we accomplished over there that justifies our cost in American lives? Women will still be oppressed. Religious liberty is not even something we’re trying to put into place over there. The Taliban is still operating. I think that proportionality is hard to demonstrate.

            Conclusion: There are other elements of Just War Theory, but I don’t have anything substantive to say about them with regard to these wars. I’m no pacifist, but I find it difficult to be a cheerleader with regard to our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. We needed to do something. I’m not sure that we did exactly what we needed to do.

          • Rob Ayers says

            Agreed Bart with most of your analysis. The Medicare expansion proposed by President Bush (which I did not support) is another of those budget busting expenses which today we have no answer for.

            My comment was filed against Aaron’s absurd assertion (implied) that Republicans alone were responsible for these wars. The wars were truly a bi-partisan effort in which Democrats only withdrew support once they became unpopular – but even then economic support of the wars were continued on a bipartisan basis.

            Rob

          • BDW says

            Given the context and briefness of my comment with regard to the wars, I think you were rather uncharitable (to be charitable) to jump to such strong conclusions about what I supposedly “implied”

            Nowhere did I use the word “alone.”

            And to be very explicit, you are indeed wrong. I believe that many Democrats do share responsibility for both wars.

          • says

            I’m not sure that we did exactly what we needed to do.

            I think the problem, Bart, is that pretty much since WWII, we haven’t gone into a war with the idea of “Let’s win this”. It’s more like we’re playing patta-cake and the enemy is actually fighting a war. I understand that we don’t want a bunch of civilian causalties, but we have the military ability to decimate the enemy forces and we havne’t done so.

          • Rob Ayers says

            “Also, it’s completely asinine to act like Republicans do not share serious burden to our nation’s fiscal struggles. TWO WARS, Dr. Barber.”

            I guess it was uncharitable of me – but looking at the statement above (and your argument before) one can come to the conclusion that I reached, no? Thank you for your further insight as to your meaning.

            I am interested in your silence to my assertions however. You must also agree with me seeing you said nothing to my direct assertions as to the main culprits for out of control budgetary fiscal policies of the past four years. Happy to see it from you.

            Rob

          • Bart Barber says

            Here are a few of my theories, Joe:

            1. I think war is more evil when it doesn’t serve any higher principles. The United States of America should stand for an approach to fundamental human rights (the real ones, not things like a purported right to an MRI) that guarantees things like religious liberty to all people. If we have to go to war in a nation, we should have as one of our primary objectives the export of our values to that nation. Multiculturalists will be against this, but they’ll be against the war under any circumstances. A war won should be a triumph of a certain set of ideas over another set of ideas.

            2. Lopsided wars are different from more evenly matched wars. In some ways, evenly matched wars are easier to win than are the wars in which you are enormously more powerful than your enemy. They don’t even come out to fight us. They just hide among the population and run guerrilla campaigns. This makes it very difficult to accomplish what I’ve suggested in my first point. And for that reason…

            3. If we can’t build the kind of nation in which we can proudly have an ally and if we can’t expect to export our values in the process of nation-building, then I think our big mistake is in attempting nation-building at all. Go in, knock things over, blow things up, kill combatants, and just leave. On the way out, say, “Make us mad again, and we’ll come blow things up again. We’re not staying behind to clean up the mess.”

            But, I’m no expert in military theory. Just offering what is probably an uninformed opinion.

          • Christiane says

            BART,
            our military doctors and nurses really helped civilians in Iraq when they could . . .
            my own niece, a Navy nurse, volunteered her time off to work with other American military female nurses to care for Iraqi women and children. As the Iraqi women were not comfortable seeing male doctors, many were helped by young American female nurses like my niece.

            much good was done,
            we can be very proud of the service of our medical people in the military who volunteer among civilian populations

          • BDW says

            Rob Ayers,

            So my decision not to respond to your assertions means that I agree with you? Really?

            I chose not to respond to your other assertions because I don’t enjoy interacting with you. Since we’re in the spirit of being charitable, I’ll leave it at that. Thanks.

          • Bart Barber says

            Christiane,

            I’m sure that what you say about our military medical personnel is 100% true. And yet, to meet the test of proportionality, you’d have to show (1) that providing humanitarian medical assistance was the reason why we declared war against these countries, and (2) that we healed more people with our medicine than we killed or wounded with our weapons.

            I think you’ll have a hard time doing that.

          • Rob Ayers says

            Aaron,

            How wonderfully tolerant and loving of you! For the record I have always enjoyed talking things over with you.

            Grace and Peace,

            Rob

    • Bart Barber says

      Jess,

      You’re comment is a very revealing one, I think. I present a research-based, numbers-driven critique of President Obama’s economic record. Because I have done so, you conclude that I am not a Democrat. I think this is very sane on your part. It reveals that objective analysis of this President is incompatible with membership in your political party.

  30. Todd Benkert says

    I’m joining a bit late, but if I understand Dwight’s argument, then Obama should be considered a Christian because he claims to be one. By that low threshold, we should consider Romney a Christian as well as he also calls himself a Christian and accepts Jesus as Lord and Savior.

    I don’t see any practical difference between Obama’s Liberation/Inclusivist Theology and Romney’s Mormon theology — both result in a false gospel and thus, despite both their claims to the contrary, we should not be basing our vote on either’s claim to be a Christian.

    • Rob Ayers says

      I agree – we should focus on what is important on what is important – that is the promotion and promulgation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and His Kingdom.

      Christians should be asking themselves in the light of these two lost candidates for President = “which promote policies which will allow for the continued freedom of the church to share the truth given to us?” and “which candidate shares our values in terms of responsible citizenship and moral righteousness?”

      The answer should then lead us to vote our conscious before God.

      Rob

  31. Todd Benkert says

    Gospel clarity is at stake in this discussion. As you look across the evangelical landscape, it seems that people on both sides of the political aisle are willing to allow the gospel to be muddled, if not outright abandoned, for the sake of their preferred candidate.

    If we lose the gospel, we’ve lost — no matter who is president.

  32. says

    Dr. Willingham, Excellent! I agree! Yet I’m not completely hopeless about the prospects of reversing this trend. There are conservative groups in Silicon Valley and other places that are trying to solve the problem because they see it as destabilizing our society. They are using private equity (often employee contributed) to start innovative companies with higher employee vesting than the traditional Wall Street model. They believe that ultimately these companies can be more competitive than the Wall Street giants. If this model can work it’s way into the service sector, where the overwhelming number of new jobs are being created, we may actually see service jobs that pay a living wage!, even without the dreaded union vs. management scenarios. Call me a dreamer; call me Rodney King; let’s all start singing Kumbaya. This calls for a new “I Have a Dream” speech (I nominate Dr. McKissic to deliver it), one that moves from racial to socioeconomic justice.

    Unfortunately, this election cycle, we have one candidate that supports government-enforced immorality and another who should be the poster child for Wall Street crony capitalism (why I’m voting for neither). Either candidate would be destructive to American morality — and yes, socioeconomic justice is a Biblical value (James 5:1-6). I’m with Dr. McKissic (I think); if I were voting solely on the basis of economic issues, I would vote for Obama.

    And Dave Miller, I agree with your preference for smaller federal government. Yet I see no evidence that the Republicans have supported this in spite of their rhetoric.

    And may I say that one of my “biggest” problems with Obamacare is the compromises the president made to get Congress to support it, compromises that will end up lining the pockets of health insurance companies with billions of taxpayer dollars. Congratulations!, the government “death panels” we dreaded now meet in the boardrooms of profit-driven corporations.

    Jake Barker, while I would not dispute your claim that there have been instances of union workers sabotaging production in order to negotiate more favorable contracts (although I have no personal knowledge of this), I think it’s a stretch to suggest that this is the reason for robotics. Movements toward higher efficiency in production (including robotics) are inevitable. We have to create new jobs and find ways to increase wages in the service economy, hopefully without oppressive government mandates.

  33. says

    O yes, some fellow got very upset with me, because I hold to the conspiracist view of history. He cut me off from all fellowship. Of course, he was not raised around a fellow who had know the first Roosevelt and had charged up San Juan Hill with him, had known MacArthur from the time Doug was a shave tail fresh out of West Point in the Philippine War, had served and won a battlefield commission as a 2nd Lt. in WWI, and was in Intelligence on MacArthur’s staff in WWII (no, he did not hob know with the Generals. His business was getting info.). Though supposedly out of the army by the end of ’43, he was in Hiroshima 6 weeks after the Bomb (surely doing intelligence work) as was my wife’s brother (Occupying marines). The dinner table of my Grandparents on Sunday Afternoons was a scene of loud, heated arguments as the whole family hashed over what Uncle Bill had to say about it. Then that all ended when I moved to St. Louis in ’55 to live with my mother. Anyway, I started to look at materials to see whether a case exists in scholarship. I should smile. It does. But I won’t say how good. Lets just say the volumes written by a good guess probably amount to 250,000 by a rough estimate. A more recent one in 2000 or thereabouts is Erwin Black’s IBM and the Holocaust and how that corporation provided the Nazis with the computers and the punch cards so that they would locate every Jew in every country they invaded and cart them off to the concentration camps and how IBM through subsidiaries maintained offices near those camps to help with the problems of the computers (you know like punch cards and etc) and how the firms payments from the Germans went into Swiss Bank Accounts. Then we have Standard Oil of New Jersey still delivering oil to the Germans up to the middle of 1944!!! O yes, and Prescott Bush was shut down by the US Govt. for giving too much help to the Germans in their finances, etc.

    Now we have the sodomites, and no one knows about the connections to the English private schools and the problems that grew out of those prep schools for boys. Also we don’t have any knowledge of the founding of the city of Venice and the “gnomes of Zurich” (compliments of Pres. Kennedy) or the beast of Brussels (some gratuitous goof by some silly fundamentalist, however, some fellow in Oregon needed a housing loan and his childhood buddy pulled up on his computer a paper from his friend’s childhood that the beast had. Simply Amazing!) and there is more but I am bored. O yes, President George Washington believed it. Why can’t you all. And you all expect anything out of either candidates…though I plan to vote against the incumbent for the simple reason of abortion (a real plan to change America by killing off the white anglo, scottish, irish, western European folks whose biblical beliefs produced a near heaven on earth that could hook every body with hope and even deliver sometimes…even if it took a stupid Murderous Civil War that slaughtered 750,000 people. (throw in the civilians and it probably reaches into the millions) when we could have handled the slavery issue like the Brits did with Wilberforce. And we don’t believe in conspiracies even when it hits you in the eye…because we been brainwashed to not believe it. What the folks who run things fear is A THIRD GREAT AWAKENING. They even spell out their theology and the theology they oppose in the book by Mr. Clinton’s mentor, Dr. Carroll Quigley, in his work, Tragedy and Hope, one of the dullest books you ever read until you find those little choice tidbits of info that tells you a conspiracy runs the world. O yes, and did C.S. Lewis lose his Oxford Don position due to the bad taste of naming one of the conspirators in his sci/fi trilogy, esp. the volume, That Hideous Strength. the name is Cecil Rhodes, and in Dr. Quigley’s other work, The Anglo American Establishment, he gives Rhodes 6th will and testament in the appendices. That will tells us the Rhodes scholarships are for the training of people to run a world government. O yes, and Old Rome has a hand in it through some of their orders and with connections to our secret societies. Life really gets interesting, including the meeting of the fellow who suggested and helped in developing the Federal Reserve and the Nazis on a train in 1938 (?)…

  34. says

    I was a member of the Teamsters, the International Assn. of Machinists, the International Shoeworkers Union, etc. I have also worked in a factory in a non-union, right to work state. There are pros and cons about the unions. I know of Unions that protect lazy workers (at an oil refinery in Ky. a fellow punched in and went to the toiler and sat there for 8 hrs and punched out…a union member said let the company fire him..we have to do his work, they would not). I know many stories like that. But let me tell you one about this right to work state in which I live. I had a young woman who had 3 little boys and a good for nothing husband who was in prison and she went out and worked back to back shifts to support and care for her children. At age 38 she had a stroke. Need I say more. In Mo. where I also worked in a shoe factory, a woman could choose to work the 9th hour, but neither she nor the company could demand or require her to work the 10th hour. The government could and did help one of my deacons where a fellow brought in a buddy and promoted him over my deacon…I recommended to my deacon that he contact the govt. and he did and the rest, as they say, is history. I also had a fellow in one of my churches tell how he had a relative who really was very much a slave in one of the textile plants, never drawing a salary because the company store took all the money from the salary (a paper shuffle as no money changed hands). Greed is not good; it is evil, and companies and individuals will take advantage in order to benefit themselves or their firms.

  35. Frank L. says

    This thread really saddens me for a number of reasons. Our political system is obviously broken. There are no exciting, god-honoring options before us in the Presidential election.

    But, this discussion has revealed something about how the slippery slope of moderate theology works.

    What does a card-carrying moderate who decries inerrancy and has been an outspoken opponent of conservative views have in common with the previous president he endorses: gay marriage, killing babies even while they are being born, lying to cover up complicity in the deaths of four Americans by a terrorist attack, and raising the deficit more than the sum of his predecessors.

    One’s theology cannot be totally removed from one’s politics, and so the latter is to a large degree a window into the former.

    • says

      Theological liberals are ALWAYS political liberals. The only people who are theologically conservative that vote politically liberal do so in support of the government handouts given by the left, or what they call “social and economic justice”.

      • Frank L. says

        Joe,

        I’m not sure I agree totally. I don’t think a true conservative would take handouts under the guise of “social and economic justice.”

        I’ve been in a situation where I had to work multiple jobs to feed my family. My kids went without braces, for example, while those whose family business was welfare received them free of charge. This would have included “glasses,” but fortunately my kids did not need them at the time.

        By the way, not only was I working two jobs, but so was my wife. I just would not consider asking my Uncle Sam for a handout.

        Now, if someone needs a “hand-up” for a period of time while they get their feet on the ground — I’m all in for that. Welfare was never intended to be a “family business.”

        After all, it’s not Solyndra or GM, welfare is a government subsidy . . . oh, wait . . . so is Solyndra and GM. Well, you get the point.

        • Frank L. says

          By the way, Joe. Just so people don’t think I mix politics and religion, I told my people at least a dozen times that because of IRS rules, I absolutely would not tell them they should vote for Romney.

          I just won’t do that. I pointed out in fairness that even if I consider Obama obysmal, I would not tell them to vote for Romney. I just won’t do that.

          Regardless of whether I feel Obama has been a national disaster politically, economically, socially and spiritually, I absolutely would not tell them they should vote for Romney. I just won’t do that, and I told them this at least a dozen times.

  36. Frank L. says

    Dwight,

    I’ve contemplated your proposal for a broadly appealing candidate for conservatives.

    I don’t know how that might work out. For example, your watershed issue is different from mine. Your watershed issue is racism. My watershed issue is abortion. You also have mentioned social and economic justice. You have not said much about the issue of abortion.

    At first blush, I think: there should be no problem finding such a candidate. Then I think, but why have we no found such a candidate?

    I think historically being anit-racist and pro-life have not always been compatible watershed issues, when mixed with the ideas of economic and social justice.

    It just doesn’t seem to be an easy solution though my gut says it should be.

  37. Jess Alford says

    Frank L.

    Frank I’ve worked two jobs and it was too hard on me physically and mentally. Do you remember when Bob Dole was running for President,
    he said it used to be that one person’s income could feed a family,
    Now it takes a husband and wife working and they still have a rough time.

    When I get to Heaven, I probably have a few choice words for Adam.

    Frank, I believe things will get worse, regardless who is President.
    If they would legalize Kentucky’s number one cash crop the financial problems of this country would go away. LOL,,,

    • Frank L. says

      Jim,

      I never said it was easy. I agree that working hard to feed one’s family is too mentally and physically exhausting for people these days.

      That’s my point.

      We need to get back to a time where we are raising a new crop of winners instead of the tired crop of whinners.

  38. Jess Alford says

    One of the things that really scares me is deregulation. The Republican party wants to do away with many regulations that we so desperately need. For instance wall street, we as a nation can’t have wall street to mess up again. I don’t want new buildings to fall to the ground because contractors cut corners and got by with it. I don’t want a new bridge to fall because the metal wasn’t tested. The mines in this country need inspectors to keep the workers safe. We need OSHA, and MSHA. We need building inspectors and food inspectors.

    Companies will make the work enviroment unsafe for the hard working American people. This is why the labor force want unions.

    The truth about the matter is that the Republican party is for the rich while looking down on the labor force.

  39. Tom Parker says

    What will be happening two weeks from today if Mitt Romney wins the Presidency because Southern Baptists and others who many times in the past called Mormonism a cult decided this what not nearly as important as electing him to the Presidency?

    • says

      What will be happening two weeks from today if Mitt Romney wins the Presidency because Southern Baptists and others who many times in the past called Mormonism a cult decided this what not nearly as important as electing him to the Presidency?

      They will be making a good choice and the right choice since (a) the two options are both non-Christians. Obama isn’t saved. and (b) it isn’t necessary that a person be a Christian in order for a Christian to vote for him.

  40. Jess Alford says

    dr. james willingham

    You are 100% right. God only intended for us to work 12 hours a day.
    Jesus said are there not 12 hours in a day.

    I have worked 16 hours a day, I didn’t like it one bit. Now that i’m a senior citizen, I’m paying for it with my health, and I’m paying dearly. I agree with you we should have compassion for the working poor. Sometimes I think Christians are some of the most selfish people in the world. Not all but certainly more than I want to count.

  41. Jess Alford says

    dr. james willingham

    I would appreciate your opinion on an issue. I don’t think I’ve ever seen such prejudice against one man as some members of the Republican party have against the President. Donald Trumph said that the President has been monkeying around with the unemployment figures. Sarah Palen said something about shuck and jive against the President. Sinunu or how ever you spell his name said the President was lazy. I’m sick of all the lies being madeup and told about the President. What are your thoughts.

    • says

      Jess: I think they are frustrated and feel a sense of betrayal, especially if they voted for Obama. I voted against him on the grounds of abortion…I had wanted to vote for him simply because he was black, but he violated one of my basic principles. However, I was not surprised at what he has wrought or that the program that he and his administration are selling is socialism pure and simple, especially of the more commie variety. We would not be much happier, if we had voted for McCain. Neither will we be if we vote for Romney. I would be happy if he kep his word and stopped spending my tax money to murder babies. If they argue for that evil on the grounds of incest and rape, I think Ethel Waters who use to say that she would not have been here had it not been for incest and murder (an uncle, so I understand). Most folks don’t realize that one outfit runs the whole show, and that the parties serve as a means for dialectical manipulation. The old inferior/superior attitude runs the show. Only a Third Great Awakening can resolve the mess, and the folks who run things dread that more than anything else.

  42. Tom Parker says

    Chris Roberts:

    You said to me:”Tom,

    Because those presidents honor God with their lips but their hearts are far from him. As it stands, their conversions are not dishonored; they have never had a conversion that can be dishonored.”

    Why do you think you have the capability to knows these men’s hearts in relations to conversion?
    You appear to me to be judging these men’s hearts and that is God’s job and not yours.

    But while you are judging hearts what would you say about Romney’s heart–is it converted?

    • says

      No, Romney is just as lost and in need of salvation as they are. I’ve repeatedly said that in other conversations. I don’t choose politicians based on their salvation.

      As for how I can say what I do, the Bible talks quite a bit about discernment and being able to tell what is false from what is true. It tells us we will know people by their fruits. It reveals truths that are essential for Christianity. It calls for us to be wise and discerning. You’re absolutely right that judgment belongs to the Lord; only he will make the full, final, eternal determination of the souls of those men, but taking what they say, do, and advocate and measuring it by the standard God has already given us in his Word, the clear picture that emerges is that these men are lost sinners in need of salvation.

      • Tom Parker says

        I am glad that you are–I would not be comfortable judging people’s hearts like you have done.

          • says

            Sorry, Tom, I was trying to extend the grace that you seem to want to extend to those whom Chris has made judgement. “Seem” being the key word after your last comment.

            So I’ll restate my comment as: Tom, given Chris’ comment 201 at 4:54 pm, your comment above is unfair.

            BTW, upon what basis are you judging your discomfort and that Chris is wrong?

        • Dave Miller says

          Tom, why don’t you simply state your position rather than trying to be the Holy Spirit bringing judgment and conviction on others?

          Tell us what you think, not just what you think is wrong with what others have said. Okay?

      • Christiane says

        Hi CHRIS ROBERTS,
        could you give a reference to the place where this is located?:
        “I’m comfortable with what I’ve already said on the subject.”
        in response to Tom’s question, please.

  43. says

    Posted this in Dwight’s other thread. Thought I’d put in here too.

    Figuring out how to vote biblically:

    1) Make a list of all the issues (abortion, gay “rights”, immigration reform, etc…)
    2) Put three columns beside those issues.
    3) In on column, put what position Democrats take. In another column, put what position Republicans take. In the last column, put the position God takes as revealed in scripture.

    There will be NOT ONE CASE that the position Democrats take on the issues lines up with what God says. In fact, most of the time, they take the OPPOSITE position. There will be a few times that the positions that Republicans take on the issues is the exact position God takes: abortion and gay “rights”. This doesn’t mean the Republican party is godly. It just means that even a broken clock is right twice a day.

    • Tom Parker says

      Joe:

      You posted:”Figuring out how to vote biblically:”

      Could you not be so kind as to say these are “your” guidelines.

      You are a very intolerant human being and it shows through in your comments.

      What in the world will you do if President Obama wins a 2nd term. Will your world come to an end?

      • says

        Could you not be so kind as to say these are “your” guidelines

        Then, please, Tom, share with us one, just one, issue that Democrats take the same position on that God takes. Just one will do. Just one………….

        (crickets chirping)

        Yeah, I didn’t think so.

      • Frank L. says

        Joe,

        The Bible clearly identifies Obama’s views on moral issues to be at odds with God’s views. One cannot honor God’s values and vote for Obama.

        Consider the “Shorter Version” of the Biblical Voters Guide in Romans 13:9. Obama is on the wrong end of every value. It’s not about “Obama the Man,” but about values.

        A vote FOR Obama is a vote AGAINST the values of God outlined in the Bible.

        Romney on the other hand has values that honor the values of God.

        End of story.

        • says

          I voted against Obama the first time over abortion, and I see every reason to continue to vote that way now as he has approved of spending our tax money for the killing of the unborn.

  44. john barnes says

    After some thought and more time spent than maybe I should have reading the blog, I feel compelled to post the following. Please understand my aforementioned comment in no way is intended to cast criticism on anyone’s point of view. If I may, a little background on me. I am a 49 year old born again Christian who accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior at the age of 19. I went on my first mission trip some 15 years ago and have been working with youth missions ever since and am most thankful for the people God has put into my life and the opportunity he has given my family and me to grow in our faith in Him and His Son our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

    Now the point of my post….

    Some 10 years ago or so the SBC supported a race reconciliation effort. I as a lay leader spoke in one of our local African American churches and an African American deacon spoke in our traditionally white church. I had been chosen because of a great burden I had for serious racial tension in our community. I had hoped this would be a start. The Lord laid on my heart one basic point of focus – The Gospel of Jesus Christ. I shared with Mt. Olive Baptist Church as I share with you, we (Christians black and white) can see things differently on issues of the world but if we can’t come together on the common bond we have in Jesus shame on us. The world is watching. Our children are watching.

    I read where some on this blog desire to seek a way to address the racial divide that exists. Here is how God is doing it in my community. A godly elder Christian white women develops great rapport with the black community for unselfishly helping children in need for many, many years. She serves as the bridge between a willing white SBC Christian man with a burden to build a bridge with the black Christian community. A willing black AME minister steps out on faith to work with the white man. Put in the mix 200 youth volunteers from all over the country volunteering their time in the name of Christ and the healing begins.

    I am not naive to think everything is perfect in my community. It is not and I know this. But I have watched the hand of God move people. I have watched God melt the hearts of men and move them to a higher level of faith. I watch as black and white Christians serve side by side in the name of Christ. For me and my family and my church it is very simple. God is working in my community and as I shared with my church we have two choices, either get on the wagon with Him or get out of the way. I choose to get on the wagon with Him. Please pray for my community as I pray for you.

    In Christian Love,

    John

  45. john barnes says

    After some thought and more time spent than maybe I should have reading the blog, I feel compelled to post the following. Please understand my aforementioned comment in no way is intended to cast criticism on anyone’s point of view. If I may, a little background on me. I am a 49 year old born again Christian who accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior at the age of 19. I went on my first mission trip some 15 years ago and have been working with youth missions ever since and am most thankful for the people God has put into my life and the opportunity he has given my family and me to grow in our faith.

    Now the point of my post….

    Some 10 years ago or so the SBC supported a race reconciliation effort. I as a lay leader spoke in
    one of our local African American churches and an African American deacon spoke in our traditionally white church. I had been chosen because of a great burden I had for serious racial tension in our community. I had hoped this would be a start. The Lord laid on my heart one basic point of focus – The Gospel of Jesus Christ. I shared with Mt. Olive Baptist Church as I share with you, we (Christians black and white) can see things differently on issues of the world but if we can’t come together on the common bond we have in Jesus shame on us. The world is watching. Our children are watching.

    I read where some on this blog desire to seek a way to address the racial divide that exists. Here is how God is doing it in my community. A godly elder Christian white women develops great rapport with the black community for unselfishly helping children in need for many, many years. She serves as the bridge between a willing white SBC Christian man with a burden to build a bridge with the black Christian community. A willing black AME minister steps out on faith to work with the white man. Put in the mix 200 youth volunteers from all over the country volunteering their time in the name of Christ and the healing begins.

    I am not naive to think everything is perfect in my community. It is not and I know this. But I have watched the hand of God move people. I have watched God melt the hearts of men and move them to a higher level of faith. I watch as black and white Christians serve side by side in the name of Christ. For me and my family and my church it is very simple. God is working in my community and as I shared with my church we have two choices, either get on the wagon with Him or get out of the way. I choose to get on the wagon with Him. Please pray for my community as I pray for you.

    In Christian Love,

    John

Trackbacks

  1. […] The comments betrayed the commenters when it landed on an SBC blog. Many seemed incredulous that Dwight would dare play the race card. We have moved on.  ”Why can’t he move on,” seemed to bubble to the surface. It appears my SBC friends may need to rethink the progress we think we have made – at least in our Country. And, I would imagine since the SBC allies so strongly with the Republican party we need to reconsider the matter in our own ranks. […]