The emerging religion

Now there are votive candles that one can burn as a prayer to Saint Obama:

Obama votive candle

I’m not saying Barack Obama intends this, but I think many Americans are actually devising a new religion around him as their savior. It’s a secular kind of salvation, yes, but that is all many people can conceive of. Nevertheless, this hope for salvation demands their faith, their adoration, and their service.

In earlier posts on this topic, some of you thought the people who say “Obama is my Jesus” and the like must be joking. I don’t think they are. I’m sure the readers of this blog who support Obama do so for his policies and because they are looking for some kind of alternative to the current administration. But he has supporters who have little idea of his policies who zealously are putting their faith in HIM.

This is natural, by the way, a tendency found in nearly all cultures throughout history, to think of their rulers as divine. When Obama gets elected, we may see again the figure of the divinized ruler. I don’t intend this as a political point, but as an observation about the reversion to a cultural paganism that can rush into a theological void.

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  • James

    That’s incredible.

  • In some respects Obama has encouraged this. For instance, in his nomination acceptance speech Obama quoted Hebrews 10:23, “Let us hold firmly, without wavering, to the hope that we confess” but he excised the whole reason for that hope: “for the one who made the promise is faithful.” An effective transformation of scriptural hope into political/secular hope!

  • Surely Obama himself is aware that his fans/followers are engaging in such behavior, and it would take absolutely nothing for Obama to step up and tell people something like, “I appreciate your support, but please don’t confuse me with Jesus Christ. I’m just a man; Jesus is the Son of God; so please, enough with the Messiah stuff.” I can see absolutely no downside for Obama to repudiate this sort of thing publicly and plenty of upside. The fact that he doesn’t do this makes me wonder if he either secretly *likes* the Jesus comparisons or else is a lot more clueless about what his supporters are doing than the media lets on.

    Then again, I’m reminded of that scene from “Life of Brian” — “I’m not the messiah”. “Only the TRUE MESSIAH would deny His divinity.” “Alright then, I *am* the messiah.” “He IS the Messiah!”

  • Yesterday, in Virginia, Barack Obama told his supporters“we’ve got a righteous wind on our backs.”

    He’s cultivated the divine message in his supporters for a while now. In his 2004 DNC speech he said:

    “I believe that we have a righteous wind at our backs, and that as we stand on the crossroads of history, we can make the right choices and meet the challenges that face us.”

    He then went on to predict John Kerry’s victory:

    “America, tonight, if you feel the same energy that I do, if you feel the same urgency that I do, if you feel the same passion that I do, if you feel the same hopefulness that I do, if we do what we must do, then I have no doubt that all across the country, from Florida to Oregon, from Washington to Maine, the people will rise up in November, and John Kerry will be sworn in as president.”

  • Jim

    Come, come now. There’s nothing new here. Take a look at Revolutionary-era sermons which glide oh so easily from “liberty in Christ” to political liberty, and (mis)use Scriptures to apply to political liberty. Or the Battle hymn, “As Christ died to make men holy, let us die to make men free.”

    Or Abraham Lincoln on America being an “amost elect nation.” Or Ronald Reagan with the “City on a Hill.”

    Throughout history, U.S. politicians on both the left and the right often invoke religious imagery to baptize their secular goals.

    So, yeah, I object to it when Obama and his supporters do the same thing, but let’s not pretend there’s anything novel here.

  • Susan aka organshoes

    Those examples hardly rise to the level of deifying a candidate–a mortal.
    The city on a hill rhetoric attributes nothing divine to America, nor does ‘a most elect nation’, but only refer to America’s exceptionalism–which some of us still believe in–based on its claims of liberty, justice, and equality. Granted there are many who see America as God’s favorite country, but I’m perfectly comfortable saying they’re dead wrong, while Lincoln and Reagan were absolutely right.
    As for the Battle Hymn reference: huh? How does that deify anything? It’s more than a sentiment, more than an implication, that our soldiers, and often private/public citizens, die in the defense and service of liberty. They don’t presume to die as Christ, for the sins of the world, nor even for religion’s sake, but in the line of their duties: their vocations.
    It’s a Battle Hymn; it glorifies not only the duties of citizens, but the singular value of this country, that it’s worth fighting and possibly dying to protect.
    Try again.

  • The only thing new (relatively) in all this is that whenever ‘the right’ speaks of God or anything close to religion, the media goes bananas.
    When ‘the left’ does it…they are silent.

  • Don S

    Recall how disappointed Christ’s followers were when they found out that he didn’t intend to establish His kingdom here on earth right then and there. It is true that man has always sought salvation in the present. Carnal man knows no other world.

  • Jim, I’m not talking about confusing religion with politics, as does sometimes happen from all sides. Conservatives honor Ronald Reagan, but no one, as far as I know, worshipped him. No one burned votive candles to his image; he never spoke from a Temple built for his pronouncements; no one called him their Jesus. Go to

    Has any American leader, from Washington through today, had these things said about him?

  • Jim

    I’m heading off to lunch, and so could web search for only five minutes on our first president. But FWIW:

    Book title: “An Imperfect God: George Washington, His Slaves and the Creation of America.”

    From a blog essay, “George Washington and the Hand of God”
    “The hand of God was notably evident in the life of the Father of Our Country. . . . Instance after instance was attested to by him and others of what they recognized as divine intervention to protect him for a purpose: the creation of a new nation and a godly society. . . . Throughout his extensive military career, Washington was never wounded in battle.

    “Here are some vivid instances of Divine Providence at work in the life of George Washington, a man, if ever there was one, chosen by God and raised up to lead his country as an example to all the world.”

    From a blog post by a pastor:

    “Thus George Washington made his battle God’s battle, and therefore the victory won was a victory for God.”

    From another blog:

    “December 14, 1799, Mount Vernon.
    George Washington is dead. America’s General, America’s leader, America’s “savior” has passed away — felled by a disease called quinsy.”

  • Not Related – Veith, what do you, as an American conservative, make of this:

  • J

    While I’ve already voted for Obama, I don’t plan to buy these candles! Nonetheless, we live in rather bleak times, and, for many reasons, Obama gives people hope that things will change for the better. But so did FDR, Martin Luther King, Jr, Lincoln, Washington, and other leaders, whose pictures hung on people’s living room and bedroom walls alongside the religious imagery and iconography.
    While the image of Obama may be jarring if you take votive candles literally, I think such candles have lost much of their religious identification for the public. As you know, they are often lit at solemn rallies, funerals, marches for peace, cancer cure walks, etc., as symbols of hope. Light = hope. While it may be unusual to see one’s head on such a candle, I think it’s plain that whoever made these simply took one with an image (St. Francis?) and used software to substitute Obama’s head. Perhaps to make a buck?
    In any event, I think that those who think we’re seeing the groundswell of an emerging religion should calm down. But, to the consternation of many conservatives, we’re seeing a groundswell to change the last 8 years of Republican-induced misery.
    By the way, how goes the hagiography at those Sarah Palin rallies? 🙂

  • Which also reminds me, in that article I linked above, yet another term has been coined, to describe the now seeming inevitability of Republican soul searching after an Obama win: Palintology.

    If nothing else, the current US election campaign has been an incredible gift to comedians and wags everywhere, across the spectrum…

  • Susan aka organshoes

    Jim, you still fail to show anything other than other people’s respect and even reverence for Washington or America. Thanking God and attributing to God a political victory hardly constitutes the deification and worship of a figure or of a country.
    Indeed, divine providence is always at work in the world.
    But we’ve never made Washington anything other than a secular sort of saint, as we have most of our founders. We’ve never attributed to them divine powers, but we certainly can say that God the Divine has worked and does work thru them.
    What you’re not showing is the melding of man and the divine. You’ve only given examples of rhetorical devices in bringing two things together: America and the will and working of God.
    If you were to quote someone like Falwell or Pat Robertson, who liken America to a New Jerusalem or Americans as God’s new chosen, or even America as a Christian nation, then you’d be onto something. But not even Falwell nor Robertson made a devil or a god out of a politician, that I recall.
    And note that Washington, in your final quote, was a savior with a lower-case s; America’s savior, not the world’s. He saved us from remaining British, for a fact, not from our sins, and no one’s said he did otherwise. No one claims he died, then rose again. Nor did anyone expect him to.

  • Bruce

    Going back to #2 and #3 comments: The more serious problem for Obama is going to be widespread resentment due to unmet expectations. I realize Biden made an attempt–a very clumsy attempt (has he been heard from since?)–to soften the beaches, so to speak, of those expecting something akin to the thousand year reign of Christ in the person of Obama. But the media will turn on him just as they turned on Jimmy Carter. It will be a great test of his rather exemplary skills as an orator to ride the crest of expectation for hope and change that he has himself created over the past several years.

    And then, there’s the probability of that three a.m. phone call. How’s an academic like Obama going to handle being under fire? No one knows, do they?

  • J

    Has anyone seen the memorials (shrines) we have built in DC to Washington, Jefferson, and, most spectacularly of all, Lincoln? Whose image in on our coins?

  • Susan aka organshoes

    And few care, it seems.
    Like I said before, he’s all they’ve got. Really. They certainly don’t have any necessary insight into who he is or how he’d govern. Just him.
    I don’t think they understand, though, from what’s out there to be known but still remains so unknown to so many, that the hope and change he’s likely to engender could be a far cry from any hope or change they desire.
    Unless they want what he wants, which means….yikes.

  • Susan @ 14: As a loyal subject of the Crown, I do take issue with the word “saved” in”He saved us from remaining British”…..

  • J

    Scylding @13, well put. We in the US do our politics rather (melo)dramatically, do we not? Makes me wish sometimes that I’d been born to a quiet life in, say, Denmark or Newfoundland.

  • Susan aka organshoes

    National shrines, not religious shrines. When’t the last time anyone worshiped Washington at the Washington Monument? When was the first time, for that matter?
    On our coins and bills are dead presidents and dead founders. Not a god among them.
    We don’t use coins to ward off evil spirits; just bill-collectors.
    Treating our heritage as heroic or our founding fathers reverentially is not tantmount to worshiping either. Lame attempts to the contrary notwithstanding.

  • J

    Susan @20, when was the last time anyone worshipped Obama? Of all people, you’d think that Christians could distinguish between enthusiasm (even misguided, over-the-top, tear-jerking enthusiasm) and worship.
    No sane person worships Obama. There are many, however, who seem to think he’s Satan.

  • FW

    lets assume that people refer to obama as savior metaphorically and as hyperbole and not in the religious sense.

    Robert Farrer Capon talks about this alot in his book titled “The Astonished Heart”

    In this amazing little book he points out that churches and political movements try to “smooth out the crumpled bag of human history” and all to no avail.

    Only christ on calvary between noon and three could do that, and in fact , DID do that.

    I would think that ANY thinking christian who is very involved as a democrat or as a republican will always sense an ever present “cognitive dissonance” with even christian fellow travellers.

    Those others see what they are doing as a “crusade” or “war” or “matter-of-life-and-death-struggle” or “doing battle with evil (while not seeing their own evil as being equal)” , that the world will somehow end as we know it if so-and-so gets elected our our candidate loses, or if homos are allowed to get a marriage license, or , or , or.

    We christians know, or should know, that the world IS in the throes of the passion of it´s death. Christ has joined His once-and-for-all victorious Passion to that of the world, and is now “in,with and under” the suffering that is in the world.

    We know from that. no. we trust our very lives on that:

    We know that any law at it´s best will only be curb not cure. Any social program will at it´s very best will be a crutch and not a cure, a balm for suffering and not a cure for the disease.

    We know that we can offer not church-as-hospital where good folk “like us” get better, but only a church-as-hospice where bad folk “like us” can go to prepare for death with some dignity, waking and sleeping, repenting and trusting forgiveness, dying and rising in the rhythm of our baptism in practice for….. dying and rising. Irrelevant to our political/religious co travellers often.

    We know, that Jesus will never leave us or forsake us. and that God in these later days has spoken to us by his Son.

    So we put all our passion into politics . We should do this. It is good , right and salutary to do so. Good works ARE necessary according to the Lutheran Confessions!

    We must do so knowing at the same time that it, along with social action by our church or rotary club or…. is nothing more than a bandaid for a wound that will never heal until it makes it´s final way to be hidden in the would in the side of Christ by the Blood and the Water that flows from it.

    Might I be right in my assumtion that the franks and susans and brors and dons and all of us can come here and argue passionately and disagree politically and still recongnize a greater thing that unifies us and truly makes us brothers and sisters and is the reason for the civility that is a norm for this site? and also have ample room for the michael-little-boots and the anons of all flavors?

  • Anon

    Barry Soetoro, a.k.a. “Barack Hussein Obama”, was given a chance in a recent interview to denounce any claims that he was the Son of God. He chose not to do so. Any Christian (and any devout Jew or Muslim) would immediately do so. King Herod refused to do so instantly, and fell down, was eaten by worms, and then died.

    “LAUER: Yeah, yeah “That one,” John McCain’s words. People have called you “The Savior,” “The Messiah,” “The Messenger of Change.” The expectations have been raised to such a level. Some people say you’re partly responsible because of your confident attitude. If you are, as you just say, lucky enough to be elected the next president are you going to have to consciously manage expectations, during the first several months of your administration?

    OBAMA: Yes. Even before I’m sworn in. Not in terms of what I think we can accomplish long term but I think it’s very important to understand that we’re not going to reverse all these problems overnight.”

    Considering this, is it a First Commandment violation to vote for Barry Soetoro?

  • FW

    #15 bruce.

    Important point dear brother.

    I have been told that FDR did not do anything in fact to get us out of the great depression and in fact may have prolonged it and that it was WWII that finally got us out.

    I have also been told that what he DID do, when all other dominant democracies except brittain were turing to some form of fascism including non-democratic russia actually, is that his value added was simply this…

    he gave people hope. he knew how to talk and give an inspiring speech. Sound like any candidate now?

    what he then did during the depression is get on the radio and explain to people in simple terms what was happening and what he planned to do about it. It calmed people. think “placebo” here. it worked well in very many ways actually from hearing my grandmother´s reverence for him. She said her last mistake vote-wise was to vote for Hoover. (who was actually not a bad president at all!).

    when you think back at important leaders, lincoln, churchill, fdr, kennedy(who accomplished nothing actually substantively except speak well….) all were great orators.

    I assume that when the election is over and IF obama wins this thing and is not assasinated…. that he will return to becoming an inspiring speaker and will look for those “teaching moments”.

    I really don´t believe a president alone should get the blame or credit we assign. No not even Bush. The best we can hope for is a president who inspires us to do better and provides a predictable environment.

    My pet theory is that an administration that is very predictable, makes no sudden moves, is one that is good for business. even if taxes are raised, business can plan around that if they know that the rules will not change every other year. Tax policies of both parties do not end up really being all that much different. clinton was fiscally more conservative than bush it could be argued, with a substantial “assist” from the gingrich congress. so i refuse to get stressed about all that.

    Reagan was excellent at all this . Even if you disagreed with his policies his clearly stated philosophy provided a certain predictability that was good for business (with the exception of the s&l crisis of course).

  • Anon

    What _is_ novel is the Barack as messiah meme, which Barry Soetoro will not renounce! That hasn’t been around since the German Christian Movement in Nazi Germany calling Hitler the Third Adam, and before that, the bar Kochva revolt!

    Divine Providence does not and never has meant that the recipient of that blessing was thought of as God. Cyrus the Mede was a recopient of Divine Providence! So have all of us been in different ways at different times. The founding of this country has *many* examples of Divine Providence. God works in the affairs of men, and judges the nations. Only Deists and atheists deny this (which means that Jefferson and Franklin were *not* Deists, just “liberals”).

    The devoted followers of Barry Soetoro, alias Barack Hussein Obama, all around the world, are calling him “the Messiah”, “Jesus”, “Mahdi”. That is quite different. This is a world-wide movement behind an antichrist who will not refuse being equated with God the Son.

  • Anon @ 25: “a world-wide movement behind an antichrist who will not refuse being equated with God the Son.”

    Veith – please put a stop to this? I think the hystericometer is pushing the red zone.

  • BS

    The Scylding @ 26 – why should he put a stop to it? What makes you think that Anon is incorrect? The Antichrist is clearly a Biblical concept. Who’s to say that BO isn’t the one? Do you have some proof to the contrary?

  • J

    BS @ 27 – Sorry, but the burden of proof lies with the proponent. Besides, doesn’t the Book of Concord answer this question?

  • What J said.

  • Michael the little boot

    Call me ignorant, but I’m really wondering: why is it such a problem for a person to change their name? Why is it a problem that Barack Obama was called “Barry” as a child? I was called Mikey by some people when I was a child. Is it really changing my name to go with my given name, Michael? And if I had a mother who had married a couple times, I would have gone with whatever surname she wanted me to have. I’m not sure as a child I would have been given a choice. Same with this Schickelgruber business. A name is just a sound we use to differentiate one from another in a crowd, or as a term of familiarity. It doesn’t mean anything more than we choose to recognize. Is there something I’m missing? Or is this just conspiracy theory stuff?

  • Michael the little boot

    J @ 28,

    Could you clue in the non-Lutherans as to what the Book of Concord clears up re: the antichrist? I’m lost.

  • WebMonk

    The Antichrist is clearly a Biblical concept. Who’s to say that Veith’s not the one? Do you have some proof to the contrary?!?!?!

    Welcome fruitcakes, one and all!

  • WebMonk

    Speaking of fruitcakes …

    Sounds like some girl made up a story about how a black guy mugged her, and then beat her and carved a B on her face when he saw she was a McCain supporter.

    Hello Crazytown, population: one more.

  • #32: Yea, it seems that somehwere a truck full of valium missed a delivery…

  • Mtlb – see the wikipedia article on antichrist – it contains a quote from the Smalcald articles (1537), which were taken into the BoC in 1580. And as to the name thing – it is conspiracy stuff, and rather weakly so too.

  • Michael the little boot

    The Scylding,

    Thanks! Another mystery solved.

  • Anyone who denies the bodily resurrection is anti-christ. In public I’ve not seen Senator Obama explicitly deny the bodily resurrection of christ. So Senator Obama is probably not an anti-christ.

  • Anon

    I didn’t say that Obama was *the* Antichrist. I used lower case and the anarthrous article for a reason. Scylding just doesn’t like me posting, that is all. Very predictable behavior, including the name-calling. The Bible of course warns us that *many* antichrists will come and even at the time of the writing, had already come. I’m not the one being hysterical. ..

    J, no, it doesn’t. There is what is written and there is what people read into things.

    Michael, as nearly as anyone can tell, while the candidate was born and named Barack (probably actually ‘Baraq’ as that is the correct transliteration from the Arabic) Hussein Obama, but when he was adopted by an Indonesian citizen and made an Indonesian citizen his name was changed to Barry Soetoro, a Muslim citizen of Indonesia. There apparently is no record of him changing his name legally at a later date, or of baptism, or of taking an oath of loyalty to America upon his later return to this country. He and his campaign refused to provide relevant information that a federal court ordered, which was due this week. So I’m calling him by his legal name now, Barry Soetoro. No big deal, that is all.

    That the office of the papacy is an antichrist. Not the specific individual referred to in Revelation who will arise at the end of salvation history. There is a tradition of anti-Catholicism that goes way beyond doctrinal differences that likes to read things into what is actually written.

    Webmonk, she was sexually assaulted and beaten, didn’t want publicity, wanted to just get away and not even see a doctor. This is *typical* for rape victims. Instead the heavily Democrat law enforcement in Pittburgh, where more people voted Democrat in 2004 than there were registered voters, gave her the third degree for hours so she naturally confessed to get away. I think the jury is out on this one. Her behavior suggests that she didn’t do this to herself and this really did happen. The other acts of violence including against Norm Coleman’s garage, a sherrifs home in Florida (multiple shots fired) a woman beaten back East, plus the way the Left continued to assume that the crowd at a Palin rally really shouted “kill him” and “off with his head” even after the Secret Service officially announced that it didn’t happen (and BS actually used that lie in the last debate with McCain, maybe we should give the poor young woman the benefit of the doubt here. Or do you think she was “asking for it” or could beat herself all over her body and give herself two black eyes, various contusions and scratch a “B” into her face?

    Or is that too much to ask?

    Doug, and as John wrote; anyone who denies that Jesus *came* *in the flesh* is of the spirit of the antichrist, which thus includes all Muslims, Michael, Dawkins and others.

    But since Jesus is the only messiah, anyone accepting that title today would have to be a false messiah which is what “antichrist” means.

  • I’m no Obama supporter, but honestly: it is a point of basic decency to call someone by the name of their preference. When people use “Barry” or “Barack Hussein” instead of “Barack”–and it is *always* his opponents, never his supporters, using those appellations–it smacks of condescension. Just because something is technically or legally justifiable does not mean it is charitable.

    And what conceivable good is done by saying a candidate is antichrist? Who is persuaded by that rhetoric? How does it further the causes of truth, goodness, beauty?

  • CRB

    I was reading Matthew 24 this morning, and now this verse came to mind:
    “Then if they say to you, ‘Look, He is in the desert!’ do not go out; or ‘Look, He is in the inner rooms!’ do not believe it. For as the lightning comes from the east and flashes to the west, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be.”

  • Carl Vehse

    Here’s some of the liturgical practices one can expect from members of the 0bamessiah cult members:

    Government computers used to find information on Joe the Plumber

    Will the privacy champions come to Joe the Plumber’s defense?

  • William

    While browsing through the comments here, I’m surprised that two items were not mentioned (if I’m not mistaken):

    1) Whether or not Mr. Obama’s image is on a votive or not may not be as important as the symbolism of the image itself. Notice the distinct Christ-like imagery. Now, this isn’t new a new thing, and kings and lords have been doing this thing since the middle ages (probably even earlier, but I don’t have any evidence off the top of my head), but that brings me to my next point:

    2) As Dr. Veith might have hinted at, what worries many Christians including myself who are clued into this potential problem is that Mr. Obama is being viewed as a replacement for Christ. He is being viewed by many people, Christian and pagan, as a sort of secular savior. Who needs Christ when the all-powerful State can save us? This is a passion for Mr. Obama that goes beyond the type of adoration a man might have for the Founders or Christian saints.

    The State does have its uses, but decorum must be preserved.


    Where’s Todd? I miss his measured responses.

  • Anon


    Simple enough; if it -is- true. That would seem to be a no-brainer. And what Christian could legitimately, knowingly vote for someone accepting the false attribute of The Messiah? That sounds to me like a First Commandment violation, and that is a matter to teach about.

  • Junior Sputnik

    Dr. Vieth, thank you for permanently divorcing yourself from the blog that is “led” by a yukky zionist who claims to be: a follower of Christ and an “American”.
    Thank you very much.

    (and this comment has been posted by a strict orthodox Calvinist)


    : )

  • Carl Vehse

    When Joe Biden was interviewed by WFTV-Channel 9’s Barbara West, Biden did not get the softball questions normally expected for 0bamaessiah’s chosen disciple, especially when The 0ne has already started on plans for his coronati…. er, inauguration.

    Instead Biden was treated to the type of questions normally reserved for grilling McCain and Palin; Biden was asked about 0bama’s comment, to Joe the Plumber, about spreading the wealth, and its similarity to remarks by Karl Marx. West also asked Biden about his comments on 0bama being tested if he got into office.

    As a result Biden cancelled the station’s upcoming interview with his wife, and the station was told that it would conduct no more interviews with 0bama campaign members.

    One should not be surprised if Barbara West’s tax returns and phone records for the last decade are soon posted on the internet, the TV station’s fire insurance is abruptly cancelled, and the station’s license is pulled by the FCC, all because WFTV news director Bob Jordan did not assume the proper role of media buttboy for 0bamessiah’s court jester running mate.

  • Carl Vehse

    Along with its article, “Will MSM Continue Ignoring Shocking Obama ‘Redistribution of Wealth’ Audio?”, Newsbusters includes the 2001 radio interview, and transcript, where The 0bama explicitly calls for the “redistribution of wealth.” (Joe the Plumber isn’t the only one who would get fleeced in an 0bamanite regime.)

    The 0bamessiah’s “holy voice” proclaims that the “[Warren Court’s interpretation of the Constitution] wasn’t that radical. It didn’t break free from the essential constraints that were placed by the Founding Fathers in the Constitution. At least as it’s been interpreted and more important interpreted in the same way that, generally, the Constitution is a charter of negative liberties; says what the states can’t do to you, what the federal government can’t do to you, but it doesn’t say what the state government or federal government must do on your behalf.”

    The 0bamasocialist is clueless; the Constitution does, as Newsbusters discusses in its article.

  • Anon

    Not to mention that Obama would raise taxes four different ways, including on married couples filing jointly making only 25,000 dollars a year. Our commissioned ministers will face at least 1,000 dollars per year increased taxes (not to mention higher prices across the board), and our ordained ministers will face even more.

  • Anon

    Carl, are you able to address the First Commandment issue that I raised, with your more advanced knowledge?

  • jim_claybourn

    Just another example of America’s conversion to / adoption of a civil religion ?

    Trying to fill that “God shaped hole” with something/anything.

  • jim_claybourn

    kind of like when a policeman/fireman/soldier/etc dies while performing their duty, they are automatically determined to be in heaven.

  • Mark

    As a colleague of mine, now of blessed memory, pointed out in a conversation that one of the great innovations of the Church of Christ Jesus was simply: we pray for Caesar, we just don’t pray TO Caesar. And obviously it still is.

  • Anon

    What does anyone think of Biden’s prophecy of a “generated world event”…. This combined with news clips of shrines to Obama made me curious, too. The false prophet, the antichrist… Why doesn’t someone from that campaign denounce this stuff and claim the glory for God and not themselves? That’s what the true antichrist will do — He’ll accept adoration and praise as a God. He won’t give the credit to God. This is probably all coincidence, but if this guy gets a fatal head wound and miraculously survives, things don’t look good.

  • Anon

    I am not the Anon of #53.

    The situation -is- ‘creepy’, as more and more commentators are saying, though.

  • CRB

    #53 Anon, The antichrist concerns the church. According to Lutheran teaching, the antichrist is the papacy. The antichrist is distinctly in reference to one who sets up himself as God, but this is not in the political realm. However, the govt can act in unison with the false christ, knowingly or unknowingly.

  • Anon

    CRB, actually the BoC refers to “the office of the papacy” as the antichrist. If you want, you can look into what that meant at the time, rather than taking received tradition in the place of what was actually written down.

    If you’ve ever read any of the apocalyptic material in the Bible you will know that there is also a specific human being that will be the Antichrist at the end of salvation-history, and this will not be a revivified Julian or Leo – though he might claim to be the Pope as well as Arthur, Barbarossa, Buddha, the Dali Llama and anything else that will draw him support. Many Roman Catholics believe the visions of an Irish monk that state that the last pope will be the Antichrist.

    Nearly all urban societies apart from the Judaeo-Christian tradition have treated their despots as deities or avatars of deity. We Lutherans believe that there are two kingdoms and that the administrative structures of the Church and the State are to be independent of each other. But to assume then that the Antichrist, his worshipers, and the false prophet will hold to Lutheran theology and political thinking is warrantless and I would say bizarre.