Thursday, March 29, 2007

Not a Christian?

James Dobson, no longer content with rejecting Christ's admonishments to avoid material wealth and to render political power unto Caesar in his role as head of the immensely wealthy and politically powerful "Focus on Family" group, has now decided to also deny Christ's teaching that "Wheresover two or more of you gather in my name, there too am I" by saying that potential GOP Presidential candidate and Church of Christ member Fred Thompson, is "Not a Christian":

"Everyone knows he's conservative and has come out strongly for the things that the pro-family movement stands for," Dobson said of Thompson. "[But] I don't think he's a Christian; at least that's my impression," Dobson added ...

Mark Corallo, a spokesman for Thompson, took issue with Dobson's characterization of the former Tennessee senator. "Thompson is indeed a Christian," he said. "He was baptized into the Church of Christ."

In a follow-up phone conversation, Focus on the Family spokesman Gary Schneeberger stood by Dobson's claim. He said that, while Dobson didn't believe Thompson to be a member of a non-Christian faith, Dobson nevertheless "has never known Thompson to be a committed Christian—someone who talks openly about his faith."

"We use that word—Christian—to refer to people who are evangelical Christians," Schneeberger added.

I wrote a few days ago about being careful to not redefine a word like "Christian" into meaninglessness by expanding it to cover basically "anyone nice whom we like", but Dobson is guilty of doing the same thing in reverse. He's decided that he gets to decide who's a Christian and who's not by defining the term downward; apparently it's not enough to believe Christ was Lord, that He rose from the dead, that he was the Son of God, or any of that other nonsense.

No, what's important to Mr. Dobson is that you be an evangelical Christian. All of you who foolishly follow Christ's advice to shut yourself in your room and pray devoutly there rather than braying out your dogma on a street corner, well, you're no Christian. I mean come on, will devoutly praying by yourself and remaining private get a Presidential advisor to visit you and ask for your approval of a potential Supreme Court nominee? I think not.

Catholics, Mormons, Church of Christers, you might as well just turn in your crucifixes, because according to Mr. Dobson you're not really Christians. I bet that comes as a shock to you, seeing as how you were believing Christ is Lord and all. Feel free to take a few moments to recover as you're ushered out of mainstream religion and politics by Mr. Dobson and his Dogma Police. Luckily we atheists will be here to give you a hug -- we've been outside the mainstream for so long we've got the place nicely decorated. It's not so bad, really.

I don't know what's more appalling here, Dobson's utter betrayal of the very philosophies he built his vast political and material fortune on, or his complete lack of shame at claiming to be the keeper of "Family Values" while endorsing the thrice-divorced serial adulterer Newt Gingrich for President at the same time.

Wait, that's no contest -- "Deeply offensive, self-indulgent, arrogant power-mad money whores who blaspheme their god" is definitely more appalling. I never thought I'd say this, because I didn't think Newt Gingrich could ever come off looking morally superior to anyone, but he's really slumming it by sucking up to the likes of Dobson.


Anonymous said...

I really like Newt Gingrich's political ideas. I heard his theories on why Iraq was not ready for democracy and hence W's ideas on making Iraq a democracy was fantasy. His leadership of the Republicans in the past was masterful. I also love Dobson's books and videos. But please tell me that you are mistaken on Dr. Dobson's endorsment of Newt as president. No way. He is obviously morally bankrupt.
As time goes on my respect for Billy Graham grows. He may have been one of the few people in american history to walk so closely to the edge between politics and religion without getting dirty.

Anonymous said...

While I myself don't believe in much of what Church of Christ folk do (such as it being a 'sin' to have instruments in church, and that their denomination is the only true one whose followers are saved/will go to heaven), I am very reluctant to say that many who attend their churches are NOT Christians. I just can't speak for what their personal faith is.... and I don't know how Dr. Dobson, whom I greatly respect, can speak for Fred Thompson. I personally think that the Church of Christ spends too much time trying to get people to join their denomination rather than just accept Christ's salvation -- my best friend while growing up was Church of Christ, and I've had friends in college and later as an adult who are.

However, I am adamant about proclaiming that Mormons are NOT Christians, despite their assertions to the contrary. All one has to do is to look at who they really believe Jesus to be. And it is SO different from the rest of Christianity -- Catholics and Protestants alike -- that they can't be Christians and deny Christ's deity. It doesn't mix....