By Mark Ellis
On the eve of the Roman Catholic Church’s selection of a new pope, President Barack Obama sat down with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos in a wide-ranging interview covering subjects extending from North Korea to the Vatican.
The president was asked about concerns voiced by a few that the choice of an American pope would lead to an unhealthy alliance between the church and the U.S. government.
“I don’t know if you’ve checked lately, but the Conference of Catholic Bishops here in the U.S. doesn’t seem to be taking orders from me,” President Obama told ABC. The president smiled broadly as he considered the likelihood of such a prospect.
While the conclave chose a South American as the new pope the day following the interview, the president seemed to welcome the idea of a pontiff from the northern part of the Americas. “It seems to me an American pope would preside as effectively as a Polish pope, an Italian pope, or a Guatemalan pope,” he said.
The president then lauded the work the Roman Catholic church performs helping the poor around the globe, before he stated his own view of the essence of the gospel.
“My hope is that you have a pope who sustains and maintains what I consider the central message of the gospel – that we treat everybody as children of God, that we love them the way Jesus Christ taught us to love them.”
The president’s religiosity has been an object of controversy for many, with some refusing to believe his affirmations of Christian faith and some even asserting he is actually a Muslim.
At presidential prayer breakfasts in recent years, President Obama has continued to declare his faith and has even provided a glimpse of his spiritual disciplines.
He has said his daily routine includes a short devotional at the start of the day. “I wake up each morning and I say a brief prayer, and I spend a little time in scripture and devotion.”
President Obama also takes calls from two influential Christian leaders: Joel Hunter, a mega church pastor from Florida, and with T.D. Jakes, a mega church pastor from Texas.
The president said his personal faith often guides his public policy choices. “When I decide to stand up for foreign aid, or prevent atrocities in places like Uganda, or take on issues like human trafficking, it’s not just about strengthening alliances, or promoting democratic values, or projecting American leadership around the world… It’s also about the biblical call to care for the least of these –- for the poor; for those at the margins of our society.
“Our goal should not be to declare our policies as biblical. It is God who is infallible, not us. Michelle reminds me of this often,” President Obama said.
One consistent theme President Obama asserted at the prayer breakfast last year is to live out one’s faith in an authentic way.
“The Bible teaches us to ‘be doers of the word and not merely hearers.’ We’re required to have a living, breathing, active faith in our own lives. And each of us is called on to give something of ourselves for the betterment of others — and to live the truth of our faith not just with words, but with deeds.”
President Obama has said that a visit with Billy Graham in 2010 led to greater passion in his devotional life. “I have fallen on my knees with great regularity since that moment — asking God for guidance not just in my personal life and my Christian walk, but in the life of this nation and in the values that hold us together and keep us strong. I know that He will guide us. He always has, and He always will.”
It’s hard to believe anything the man says, however I would like to believe his sincerity, and I pray it’s real. Only God knows!
I have met with him many times while he was a Senator and you really need to take a deep breath and read what he says
He is a moslem as well as a radical marxist.
The first time I met him I mentioned that I was working with Christians and the moment he heard the word `Christian` he reacted in disgust and walked off.
You are misleading people.
He hates Christianity and Christians and is a passionate moslem.
He prays the moslem prayer perfectly which is why he can say that he `prays` and reads `scripture` . . . you will never catch him saying Jesus, Christ and his policies have been passionately anti-christian.
Obama is not muslim, he is a misplaced thiest who is also a humanist. All which is just as bad as an aithiest.
My intent is not to mislead, but to inform.
I am reporting on this because I think his statements regarding faith are relevant to our readers. They can draw their own conclusions.
I don’t know his heart, but I agree with you that certain conclusions can be drawn from his actions and the fruit of his policies.
I believe you. He said while campaigning in NC that he wished Christians would stop saying Jesus Christ was the only way to receive eternal life. He’s got so many people fooled, it’s unbelievable.
You are lying about Pres. Obama and you don’t know a thing about Marxism or Christianity. My copy of the Holy Bible is right between my copy of the Communist Manifesto and my copy of the United States Constitution.
Barack Obama is a post modernist, which means he thinks that, just as values are only valid relative to given situations, truth is generally determined by what you choose to believe. His beliefs are as incompatible with Islam as they are with Christianity.
So, the rantings of a few nut cases notwithstanding, Barack Obama is not a Muslim. He is certainly not a Christian, either.
He says, “what I consider the central message of the gospel (is) that we treat everybody as children of God, that we love them the way Jesus Christ taught us to love them.” That is not what the Bible teaches and it is not what real Christians believe.
Of course, the left would like Americans to believe that this Obama-is-a-Muslim nonsense is typical of what conservative Republicans believe. If that were so, we would receive about 1% of the vote and the left would have nothing to worry about.
How is it that you can possibly know what “real” Christians believe? Who elected you to speak for all Christians. How can any person know what truly lies at the heart of other people? What hubris.
And besides, I have heard President Obama say “Jesus Chirst” on TV. That doesn’t make him a Christian either.
If the central message of the gospel is, as President Obama asserts, that we treat everybody as “children of God,” then it was not necessary for Jesus Christ to ” . . . humble Himself and become obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.” Our sin separates us from the family of God, and it is only through faith in Jesus Christ and His finished work that brings about God’s work of adoption that make us His children. John 1:12 states it clearly when the Apostle says, “But as many as receive Him (Jesus Christ), to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name.”
The essence of the Gospel is that “God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood. we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life” (Romans 5:8 – 10).
We indeed do love those who are not yet “children of God” as Jesus Christ loved so they too will be attracted to “join the family”!!
Thank you,Larry! That is indeed the very heart of the True Gospel;anything less is simply man-centered pseudo-“theology”.Mr.Obama epitomized that mindset when he stated,…”I believe the essence of the gospel is”…effectively positing man-centered philosophies as definitions of “the gospel”-NO,NO,and again NO!!!
And thanks to you Laurence for your confirmation of the Central Message of the Gospel!!!
Obama does not know the central message of the Gospel. The central message is that we are all sinners in need of grace. Also only those who have faith in Christ and repent of their sin (which include to sin no more) are children of God, the rest are children of Satan. We are to love all people, but in a benevolent way only. True special love is reserved for the elect members of the church who have experiance the new birth, (born from above with a new heart that hates sin and obeys God’s law with dilagents). There are many who profess to be Christian that produce some pretty rotten fruit. Obama is not a Christian because he does not hate what GOD calls sin.
One side note; no where in scripture does it say that the goverment is to take care of the poor, this belongs to each individual person.
I started to say what you said, but I’ll just say “AMEN!” and “DITTO!” A true Christian KNOWS the central message of the Gospel, if nothing else about the Bible. They learn priniciples as they grow in the Word.
Good report Mark. Of course there is not a lot in the presidents policies to indicate that he follows the whole Gospel or Biblical values as we know them but for now, I’m reminded to pray for him and the time he does listen to pastors or others who know the Truth.
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