I just had the opportunity to write a Christianity Today piece on whether the American president is a pastor or not. Judd Birdsall and I wrote point-counterpoint essays for the site. As with our previous exchange, I enjoyed the experience and thought Judd made some good points in his article. It’s interesting to think this through in light of the fact that the Republican ticket is led by a Mormon and a Catholic.
Here’s the core of my argument from “Our American President: The ‘Almost Pastor’ of an ‘Almost Chosen’ Land”:
What of the upcoming election, which features a Mormon candidate for the presidency? However charitable and even constructive in certain ways, recent Mormon-Christian dialogues have not necessarily assuaged the doctrinal concerns of many evangelicals. The President, however, is not a pastor. As recent books like Could I Vote for a Mormon as President? argue, it is conscionable to support and vote for a Mormon.
…America is a unique country, one that has accomplished tremendous good in its relatively short life. The “almost pastor,” the President of this nation, seemingly an “almost chosen” land, has the opportunity to extend this legacy or to quash it. Christians have a chance to play a role in this great matter, even as we remember that our disappointment in even the best of leaders is only temporary. Soon, a figure will rule the world who gives us far more than telegenic looks and searing oratory.