Nancy Pelosi’s favorite Bible verse

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has been taking every opportunity to share her favorite Bible passage:

“The Bible tells us in the Old Testament, ‘To minister to the needs of God’s creation is an act of worship. To ignore those needs is to dishonor the God who made us.’ On this Earth Day, and every day, let us honor the earth and our future generations with a commitment to fight climate change.”

Apparently, it’s a favorite verse of hers. She has used it in official statements on global warming, the budget, Martin Luther King Day, Christmas, and why she’s a Democrat.

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About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • http://www.brandywinebooks.net Lars Walker

    If she truly believes in her heart it’s in the Bible, who are we to judge her in a matter so deeply personal and subjective? (Cough, cough)

  • http://www.brandywinebooks.net Lars Walker

    If she truly believes in her heart it’s in the Bible, who are we to judge her in a matter so deeply personal and subjective? (Cough, cough)

  • Manxman

    That’s some pretty creative Biblical verse citation.

    There are a number of places in scripture where the land is seen as being defiled by the sin of the people living on it like these verses from Jeremiah 3:

    If a man divorces his wife
    and she leaves him and marries another man,
    should he return to her again?
    Would not the land be completely defiled?
    But you have lived as a prostitute with many lovers—
    would you now return to me?”
    declares the LORD.

    “Look up to the barren heights and see.
    Is there any place where you have not been ravished?
    By the roadside you sat waiting for lovers,
    sat like a nomad [a] in the desert.
    You have defiled the land
    with your prostitution and wickedness.

    Therefore the showers have been withheld,
    and no spring rains have fallen.
    Yet you have the brazen look of a prostitute;
    you refuse to blush with shame.

    I’ll take Pelosi’s Biblical scholarship more seriously when I see her using verses like these to suggest a solution to man’s poor stewardship of the natural and moral environment.

  • Manxman

    That’s some pretty creative Biblical verse citation.

    There are a number of places in scripture where the land is seen as being defiled by the sin of the people living on it like these verses from Jeremiah 3:

    If a man divorces his wife
    and she leaves him and marries another man,
    should he return to her again?
    Would not the land be completely defiled?
    But you have lived as a prostitute with many lovers—
    would you now return to me?”
    declares the LORD.

    “Look up to the barren heights and see.
    Is there any place where you have not been ravished?
    By the roadside you sat waiting for lovers,
    sat like a nomad [a] in the desert.
    You have defiled the land
    with your prostitution and wickedness.

    Therefore the showers have been withheld,
    and no spring rains have fallen.
    Yet you have the brazen look of a prostitute;
    you refuse to blush with shame.

    I’ll take Pelosi’s Biblical scholarship more seriously when I see her using verses like these to suggest a solution to man’s poor stewardship of the natural and moral environment.

  • CRB

    Just read in article that John McCain’s favorite Bible passage is, “Do unto others as you would have them do
    unto you.” If these folks claim to be Christian, then why would their favorite passage be a Law passage?!
    Any thoughts?

  • CRB

    Just read in article that John McCain’s favorite Bible passage is, “Do unto others as you would have them do
    unto you.” If these folks claim to be Christian, then why would their favorite passage be a Law passage?!
    Any thoughts?

  • Bruce

    CRB,

    Perhaps, the answer to your question is because they are law makers.

  • Bruce

    CRB,

    Perhaps, the answer to your question is because they are law makers.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    Endorsing the Golden Rule now qualifies as legalism? I’m hardly one to rail about raging antinomianism in the church, but maybe this indicates that I should start.

    :^)

    CRB, the answer to your question is that this is part of the Great Commandments given by Jesus, and hence this is part & parcel with the Good News.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    Endorsing the Golden Rule now qualifies as legalism? I’m hardly one to rail about raging antinomianism in the church, but maybe this indicates that I should start.

    :^)

    CRB, the answer to your question is that this is part of the Great Commandments given by Jesus, and hence this is part & parcel with the Good News.

  • Joe

    Did Pelosi make up her own favorite verse? Some Biblical scholars say yes.

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,352534,00.html

  • Joe

    Did Pelosi make up her own favorite verse? Some Biblical scholars say yes.

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,352534,00.html

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Wow, this is just bizarre! I’m not so much surprised that she appears to have made it up out of whole cloth, but rather that she has consistently repeated that phrase, word-for-word. She’s obviously memorized it, but from what?

    I also noticed that in the transcript of a civil right speech she gave in 2006 which contained this “teaching” (http://www.house.gov/pelosi/press/releases/Jan06/mlk.html), it was not treated as a quote (no quotation marks), but a general summary of principles: “They have reminded us that the Bible teaches …”

    But in an interview with Tavis Smiley (http://www.pbs.org/kcet/tavissmiley/archive/200710/20071022_pelosi.html), she actually says the quote is from Isaiah: “In the Old Testament, Isaiah says, ‘To minister …’”

    Ah well, as the Bible says, “To thine own self be true.” And, “This, too, shall pass.”

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Wow, this is just bizarre! I’m not so much surprised that she appears to have made it up out of whole cloth, but rather that she has consistently repeated that phrase, word-for-word. She’s obviously memorized it, but from what?

    I also noticed that in the transcript of a civil right speech she gave in 2006 which contained this “teaching” (http://www.house.gov/pelosi/press/releases/Jan06/mlk.html), it was not treated as a quote (no quotation marks), but a general summary of principles: “They have reminded us that the Bible teaches …”

    But in an interview with Tavis Smiley (http://www.pbs.org/kcet/tavissmiley/archive/200710/20071022_pelosi.html), she actually says the quote is from Isaiah: “In the Old Testament, Isaiah says, ‘To minister …’”

    Ah well, as the Bible says, “To thine own self be true.” And, “This, too, shall pass.”

  • CRB

    I’m not running for office and probably no one cares, but
    my favorite Bible passage is, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.” – Romans 3:23-24
    I think that covers both Law and Gospel. Still waiting for someone in the political arena to quote that or some passage which brings Christ into the picture when discussing one’s faith!

  • CRB

    I’m not running for office and probably no one cares, but
    my favorite Bible passage is, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.” – Romans 3:23-24
    I think that covers both Law and Gospel. Still waiting for someone in the political arena to quote that or some passage which brings Christ into the picture when discussing one’s faith!

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Wow, this is just bizarre! I’m not so much surprised that she appears to have made it up out of whole cloth, but rather that she has consistently repeated that phrase, word-for-word. She’s obviously memorized it, but from what?

    I also noticed that in the transcript of a civil right speech she gave in 2006 which contained this, um, teaching, it was not treated as a quote (no quotation marks), but a general summary of principles: “They have reminded us that the Bible teaches …”

    But in an interview with Tavis Smiley, she actually says the quote is from Isaiah: “In the Old Testament, Isaiah says, ‘To minister …’”

    Ah well, as the Bible says, “To thine own self be true.” And, “This, too, shall pass.”

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Wow, this is just bizarre! I’m not so much surprised that she appears to have made it up out of whole cloth, but rather that she has consistently repeated that phrase, word-for-word. She’s obviously memorized it, but from what?

    I also noticed that in the transcript of a civil right speech she gave in 2006 which contained this, um, teaching, it was not treated as a quote (no quotation marks), but a general summary of principles: “They have reminded us that the Bible teaches …”

    But in an interview with Tavis Smiley, she actually says the quote is from Isaiah: “In the Old Testament, Isaiah says, ‘To minister …’”

    Ah well, as the Bible says, “To thine own self be true.” And, “This, too, shall pass.”

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    CRB (@8), to tie this into a different thread, my favorite Bible verse was one I had on an old car (I handmade the bumper sticker) that had 1 John 4:10: “This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” Law and gospel are there, as well as a message against works righteousness and a clarification of what it means that “God loves us.” So many people misunderstand that concept.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    CRB (@8), to tie this into a different thread, my favorite Bible verse was one I had on an old car (I handmade the bumper sticker) that had 1 John 4:10: “This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” Law and gospel are there, as well as a message against works righteousness and a clarification of what it means that “God loves us.” So many people misunderstand that concept.

  • Kyralessa

    Aren’t Democrats cute when they pretend to be religious?

  • Kyralessa

    Aren’t Democrats cute when they pretend to be religious?

  • http://www.lavrai.com/blogs LaVrai

    I don’t think Ms. Pelosi was going for a Bushism…but she should have made it clear that she was paraphrasing…because she would be condemned if she tried to make us think the Bible actually says that.

    Believe me, I was all lined up to throw the first stone, but after actually looking at some verses, I find that what Ms. Pelosi paraphrased is actually quite correct and can be found in the Holy Bible.

    Peace,
    http://lavrai.com/blogs/2008/04/26/nancy-pelosi-got-the-bible-verse-right/

  • http://www.lavrai.com/blogs LaVrai

    I don’t think Ms. Pelosi was going for a Bushism…but she should have made it clear that she was paraphrasing…because she would be condemned if she tried to make us think the Bible actually says that.

    Believe me, I was all lined up to throw the first stone, but after actually looking at some verses, I find that what Ms. Pelosi paraphrased is actually quite correct and can be found in the Holy Bible.

    Peace,
    http://lavrai.com/blogs/2008/04/26/nancy-pelosi-got-the-bible-verse-right/

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Kyralessa, I’m sure you didn’t mean that (@11) to sound as judgmental and arrogant as it reads. Right?

    LaVrai (@12), I’m given to defending Democrats here when I feel they are wrongly maligned, but I don’t really see that here. Ms. Pelosi has so consistently used this phrase in several contexts, it’s hard to imagine that she thinks she’s just paraphrasing. There is also the issue that her own Web site (as Speaker of the House) uses quotation marks around this quote in her latest use of it. Finally, there’s the interview (which I mentioned above) in which Ms. Pelosi says that her passage (paraphrased or not) comes from Isaiah. Did she merely misspeak? It’s possible. But I have a hard time seeing that this is just a consistent paraphrase (and one misattribution) of Biblical principles.

    Though I agree that her quote can be defended Biblically.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Kyralessa, I’m sure you didn’t mean that (@11) to sound as judgmental and arrogant as it reads. Right?

    LaVrai (@12), I’m given to defending Democrats here when I feel they are wrongly maligned, but I don’t really see that here. Ms. Pelosi has so consistently used this phrase in several contexts, it’s hard to imagine that she thinks she’s just paraphrasing. There is also the issue that her own Web site (as Speaker of the House) uses quotation marks around this quote in her latest use of it. Finally, there’s the interview (which I mentioned above) in which Ms. Pelosi says that her passage (paraphrased or not) comes from Isaiah. Did she merely misspeak? It’s possible. But I have a hard time seeing that this is just a consistent paraphrase (and one misattribution) of Biblical principles.

    Though I agree that her quote can be defended Biblically.

  • CRB

    tODD,
    Yes, your bumper sticker quote I think might even cover that misnomer bandied about by Baptists and others of the Ref/Calv. persuasion: “God loves the sinner, but hates the sin.” NOT! God hates the sinner.
    God loves IN THIS WAY: IN CHRIST!

  • CRB

    tODD,
    Yes, your bumper sticker quote I think might even cover that misnomer bandied about by Baptists and others of the Ref/Calv. persuasion: “God loves the sinner, but hates the sin.” NOT! God hates the sinner.
    God loves IN THIS WAY: IN CHRIST!

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    CRB, exactly how do you explain, then, all the places where the Word clearly says that God loves us? And where does it say that God hates the sinner in general?

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    CRB, exactly how do you explain, then, all the places where the Word clearly says that God loves us? And where does it say that God hates the sinner in general?

  • Kyralessa

    tODD,

    Yes, it was indeed intended to be judgmental and arrogant. Thanks for noticing. When Democrats quit advocating killing babies in the womb while calling themselves true and faithful believers, I’ll quit being judgmental.

  • Kyralessa

    tODD,

    Yes, it was indeed intended to be judgmental and arrogant. Thanks for noticing. When Democrats quit advocating killing babies in the womb while calling themselves true and faithful believers, I’ll quit being judgmental.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Kyralessa (@16), when Christians are shown their own sinful attitudes, and they admit that their attitudes are wrong, the proper response for them is one of contrition, not to point to someone else’s sin and say, “But they’re sinful, too!”

    Yes, many (but not all) Democrats wrongly advocate for the sinful behavior that is abortion. That does not excuse you from being arrogant or judgmental.

    And remember that your earlier comment made it clear that you don’t think any Democrats are religious, much less Christians. If you think that religiousness, to say nothing of salvation, can be determined along party lines, you are wrong.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Kyralessa (@16), when Christians are shown their own sinful attitudes, and they admit that their attitudes are wrong, the proper response for them is one of contrition, not to point to someone else’s sin and say, “But they’re sinful, too!”

    Yes, many (but not all) Democrats wrongly advocate for the sinful behavior that is abortion. That does not excuse you from being arrogant or judgmental.

    And remember that your earlier comment made it clear that you don’t think any Democrats are religious, much less Christians. If you think that religiousness, to say nothing of salvation, can be determined along party lines, you are wrong.

  • Kyralessa

    See, tODD, the tricky thing about humility is that the minute one points out someone’s lack of it (as you’ve done), one displays a lack of it oneself. You can’t really be humble while criticizing other people for not being humble.

    So…you take your lack of humility up with your priest/minister/whatever, and I’ll take my lack of humility up with mine.

  • Kyralessa

    See, tODD, the tricky thing about humility is that the minute one points out someone’s lack of it (as you’ve done), one displays a lack of it oneself. You can’t really be humble while criticizing other people for not being humble.

    So…you take your lack of humility up with your priest/minister/whatever, and I’ll take my lack of humility up with mine.

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Kyralessa, sorry, but I reject the premise of your response (@18). Were Paul or Peter arrogant when they called certain people arrogant in their letters? No. They were saying what was plain, and condemning that attitude. It is our job as Christians to point out and decry sin where we see it. Indeed, that appears to have been the indirect motivation behind your first snarky comment about Democrats, and several of your later comments as well.

    Besides, I intentionally phrased my first message to you (@13) as a question so that you could explain how you didn’t mean to sound arrogant and judgmental, or that it was a mistake you regret, or some other explanation. You chose none of those, instead admitting to your wrong attitude, but, sadly, not repenting of it. You know it’s wrong, but you’re not sorry for it.

    Christians are not directed merely to passively let everyone take their sins to their priest or pastor. Read the New Testament and tell me if Jesus, Paul, and the rest didn’t do a whole lot of calling people on their sins.

    I’m not saying I’m not sinful, Kyralessa. I am. As are all Democrats (and Republicans). I’m just wondering when you’re going to get around to noticing your own sinful attitude in your initial comment (and the subsequent defenses thereof). Or will you keep changing the subject to other people’s problems?

  • http://www.cockahoop.com/ tODD

    Kyralessa, sorry, but I reject the premise of your response (@18). Were Paul or Peter arrogant when they called certain people arrogant in their letters? No. They were saying what was plain, and condemning that attitude. It is our job as Christians to point out and decry sin where we see it. Indeed, that appears to have been the indirect motivation behind your first snarky comment about Democrats, and several of your later comments as well.

    Besides, I intentionally phrased my first message to you (@13) as a question so that you could explain how you didn’t mean to sound arrogant and judgmental, or that it was a mistake you regret, or some other explanation. You chose none of those, instead admitting to your wrong attitude, but, sadly, not repenting of it. You know it’s wrong, but you’re not sorry for it.

    Christians are not directed merely to passively let everyone take their sins to their priest or pastor. Read the New Testament and tell me if Jesus, Paul, and the rest didn’t do a whole lot of calling people on their sins.

    I’m not saying I’m not sinful, Kyralessa. I am. As are all Democrats (and Republicans). I’m just wondering when you’re going to get around to noticing your own sinful attitude in your initial comment (and the subsequent defenses thereof). Or will you keep changing the subject to other people’s problems?

  • Kyralessa

    Geez, I can practically hear “Just As I Am” playing in the background.

  • Kyralessa

    Geez, I can practically hear “Just As I Am” playing in the background.

  • Bob Connolly

    Interesting that an abortionist would even think about God and His Word much less site Him as a mentoring element in her life.

  • Bob Connolly

    Interesting that an abortionist would even think about God and His Word much less site Him as a mentoring element in her life.

  • nancy

    i have a qustion is nancy in the bible

  • nancy

    i have a qustion is nancy in the bible


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