Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Jesus 2008, Part II: John McCain's God

This is the second posting in a series that will look at each of the major presidential candidates in light of their personal relationship with Jesus. Please continue to check back for additional posts in this series.

Previously, I talked about the sad spectacle of John McCain pandering to the religious right by disavowing all the credit he once gave to his fellow POWs for keeping him alive in Vietnam, to instead credit God for his survival.

But there is another interpretation, one that speaks better of his integrity, but at the same time suggests that the God John McCain believes in...might not be the one he's supposed to believe in.

Here's the video, from McCain's website, of him talking about his faith. Not, it's worth noting, talking about God or Jesus, but talking about his faith.


"My faith has been my salvation. ... My faith has been my anchor and my guide... The reason, the only reason why I'm here today is because I believe that a higher being has a mission for me in my life, a reason for me to be here. Now, that doesn't mean that he wants me to be elected or not, but it does mean that I have a purpose. And that purpose, I think, is to live a life based on Judeo-Christian principles and honor and integrity."
George W. Bush hired a speechwriter to ensure that his public remarks evoked the same God, the same Jesus, that the conservative base believes in: A personal, anthropomorphic God who has preferences when it comes to presidential elections, Grammy results and the Super Bowl. McCain's mistake here is to reveal that he does not believe in this God.

McCain, it is clear, either believes in the progressive, non-literalist left's notion of God, or he believes in the not-really-God that many on the left call God--the god who's just love or fate or an energy that binds us or some other similar nonsense--or McCain is simply lying and doesn't believe in God at all.

After all, it's not God or Jesus who saved McCain, he says. It's faith. In other words, it wasn't the intervention of an external force that saved him, it was an internal phenomenon that saved him: His own mental stance, faith. And McCain clearly does not envision a God of personal preferences. McCain could have said he does not know whether God wants him to be elected. But he didn't. He said he's not claiming that God has a desire one way or another.

And look at the mission McCain's God has for him--to live a life based on Judeo-Christian values. It's the language of a non-religious person trying to fake religiosity. A Jewish God, after all, would want McCain to base his life on Jewish values; a Christian God on Christian values. There's no conceivable God that could want believers to base their lives based on the values of two separate religions. A true believer--in any religion--would have used language that avoided choosing one sect over another. McCain made the mistake of combining them, which no sect's God would ever do.

Furthermore, unlike George W. Bush--whose mother told him the pastor was "talking to you" in talking about God's desire that Americans find a leader--John McCain says the only mission he thinks God has in mind for him is the same one God would have for anyone: Live by good values, don't be a jerk. The God of the religious right has specific missions for each and every person. Preach the gospel, win American Idol, whatever. McCain doesn't get that.

We don't know whether McCain lost faith and found reason in Vietnam. But in his book, "Faith of My Fathers," McCain makes clear that the driving faith in his life has been the faith in country, honor and integrity instilled in him by his military family. His salvation was not Jesus, God or even religious faith. It was the cellmates who kept him going and told him dirty jokes.

It's possible that McCain believes in some sort of magical entity that might qualify as "God." But if he does, it's clear from his own language that this god is the same god that much of the left believes in. But it is most assuredly not the hurricane-causing, miracle-granting, prayer-listening-to, president-rooting-for, political-policy-having god of the religious right.

8 comments:

Final Prophetess said...

Jesus WILL return in 2008
http://www.telechurch.org/prophetic_symbolism_for_2008.htm

Anonymous said...

The only way well have peace in this world is through the lord Jesus... Jesus is the way war leads to peace.

"The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name." (Exodus 15:3)
(a holy war for peace)

John McCain is the only cannidate that will fufill our presidents war on terrirism and islam. What we need in these endtimes is a good strong anti-libaral, non-hippie who holds true to the word of our lord. I really hope WHEN McCain becomes president he lives up to the republican platform and ends abortion, criminalizes gay sex and marrage and stops de-regulashion. We need to invade andor nuke iran and all these terriorists before its too late. This is exacly what the bible pridected would happen if the world fell away from his word. Armogeddon is close at hand we must stop them as a global force and unite christians and live as the word would tell us. and wage war against the non-beilevers and democarats and libarals.

jesus is the only way to peace
"The righteous shall rejoice when he sees the vengeance. He shall wash his feet in the blood of the wicked." (Psalms 58:10)

Anonymous said...

yeah i wanna to say something here the things that believes mackain is not good for islam but islam knows how to defend that barbaric thing that beleives macakain so islam is peace religion and i wanna to welcome for islam any chirstian people for peace of islam thkzzzzzwelcome for islam peace a/s/c/w

Anonymous said...

Ah yes my friends the idiot purveyor of lies John McCain has released a new add that builds an image of Obama as moses and then mocks the very hand of God. The Godless McCain has such a cynical disdain for Christian faith and takes the very grace and power of God in vain. What could God have in store for McCain the tool of Satin. Cancer, a brain hemorrhage, one can only wonder and pray for the quick disposal of this sad, despicable soul.

Anonymous said...

The Bible says that Jesus will come like a thief in the night. I don't think that anyone can predict when it will happen. Anyone who does minimizes God. Why is there suffering in the world? I don't know but I trust that God does it for good.

On to McCain. Why can't McCain say the word Jesus Christ? Why is he so reserved in his faith. Anyone who is truly a Christian follows the great commission and openly speaks out. Shame on you McCain. Either be a Christian or not... Lukewarm is not a place to be in God's eyes...

hi said...

Final prophetess - If Jesus doesn't return in 2008 you are a false prophetess. Read what the Bible says about that.

In regards to McCain acknowledging his Judeo/Christian faith... This is not a man who is attempting to fake his faith but rather one who recognizes that his Messiah was a Jew. Good for McCain!

hi said...

oh - one more thing - i rarely say the name jesus - rather i use his real name - YESHUA! - does this mean I am not saved?!?!? HA!

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