Some Christians Angry at Obama’s ‘Nonbelievers’ Statement
When Barack Obama said, “We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus, and nonbelievers” in his inaugural speech, he ran afoul of many fundamentalist Christians, who reject this kind of inclusiveness and think atheists are Satanic imps from hell: Obama’s Nonbeliever Nod Unsettles Some.
With that one line, the president “seems to be trying to redefine American culture, which is distinctively Christian,” said Bishop E.W. Jackson of the Exodus Faith Ministries in Chesapeake, Va. “The overwhelming majority of Americans identify as Christians, and what disturbs me is that he seems to be trying to redefine who we are.”
Earlier this week, Jackson was a guest on the popular conservative Christian radio show ‘Janet Parshall’s America,’ where a succession of callers, many of whom identified themselves as African-American, said they shared the concern, and were perplexed and put off by the president’s shout-out to nonbelievers.
Jackson said he and others have no problem acknowledging that “this country is one in which everybody has the freedom to think what they want.” Yet Obama crossed the line, in his view, in suggesting that all faiths (and none) were different roads to the same destination: “He made similar remarks in the campaign, and said, ‘We are no longer a Christian nation, if we ever were. We are a Jewish, Hindu and non-believing nation.’”
Not so, Jackson says: “Obviously, Jewish heritage is very much a part of Christianity; the Jewish Bible is part of our Bible. But Hindu, Muslim, and nonbelievers? I don’t think so. We are not a Muslim nation or a nonbelieving nation.” …
The Rev. Cecil Blye, pastor of More Grace Ministries Church in Louisville, Ky., said the president’s reference to nonbelievers also set off major alarm bells for him. “It’s important to understand the heritage of our country, and it’s a Judeo-Christian tradition,” period.
(Hat tip: AP.)