Top evangelical to Anthony Weiner: Try Jesus
June 14th, 2011
11:59 AM ET

Top evangelical to Anthony Weiner: Try Jesus

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) - One of the nation’s most prominent evangelicals has entered the debate over whether Anthony Weiner will benefit from therapy, encouraging the embattled  Jewish New York congressman to try Jesus instead.

Albert Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, tweeted this message of the weekend: “Dear Congressman Weiner: There is no effective ‘treatment’ for sin. Only atonement, found only in Jesus Christ."

The tweet set some tongues a wagging, especially because Weiner is Jewish.

USA Today said the remark echoed Fox News' Brit Hume comment that golfer Tiger Woods, a Buddhist, should try Christianity after he became embroiled in a sex scandal last year.

Mohler, who leads the flagship school of the Southern Baptist Convention - the nation's largest evangelical denomination - took to his blog Tuesday to defend himself amid the controversy, noting that his tweet “never mentioned Judaism.”

“Rep. Weiner’s problem has to do with the fact that he is a sinner, like every other human being, regardless of religious faith or affiliation,” Mohler wrote. “Christians — at least those who hold to biblical and orthodox Christianity — believe that salvation is found through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and in him alone.”

Mohler called the controversy over his tweet “another sign of how politically incorrect biblical Christianity is becoming in our times.”

What do you think? Is Mohler simply stating Christian doctrine? Or is it improper to suggest that members of other religious traditions who are facing crises try Jesus?

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Christianity • Jesus • Judaism

soundoff (968 Responses)
  1. Powersoak

    Gentile Dog, go lick yourself. How utterly degrading a suggestion that someone who worships the Creator of all that is should abandon the true faith for your religion of pie in the sky after you die by following a false messiah. Reuniting with our Creator after this life is not something Jews have to worry about, nor is it conditional. There is no emnity between us and our Creator. We are beloved children with pure, immortal souls formed by our Creator and breathed into us by our Creator. Our souls are guarded by our Creator and will be taken back by our Creator after this stage of life. It is a given. Christian salvation is something sold and to make it "needed" your religion scares everyone by telling them how sinful they are and puts fences and walls between mankind and the unconditional love of our Creator. . That goes counter to the Jewish roots of your religion. Keep your religion of sin to yourself. We Jews don't need your salvation, or your false Messiah. We have several thousand years worth of a relationship with our Creator. The people who run your religion have not missed one opportunity down through the centuries to try to kill us off, but we have emerged victorious. Your church wanted our wealth. Since we would not join, you tried to get it by killing us. It is wealth, not our souls, Christianity wants. The church hates us because we undermine the authority of your messiah by not accepting him as ours. In fact, Christianity, at least as practiced in most places is a religion of hate, not love. With your souls so full of hate, I don't know how you are going to enjoy your heaven.

    Our faith encourages discovery of sound principles on which to build a firm faith by questioning; your religion demands blind, irrational obedience. Anthony Weiner needs treatment (rational action), just like all others who develop an illness, not some fake forgiveness (irrational action). As far as we know, he has hurt himself and his loved ones and disappointed a lot of those who admire what he stands for, but sin? I don't think so. He needs treatment for an illness and he will get it. He will ask for and receive forgiveness from those whom he hurt. He will ask his Creator for help and will receive it, with lots of understanding and unimaginable love of the highest quality because our Creator knows we are immortal spiritual beings placed in physical, mortal bodies for our earthly sojourn. We are not expected to be perfect, but we are not universally damned because we are imperfect. Unlike your pathetic self image inflicted upon you by your religion's low opinion of mankind, we know that we are beloved children, loved with a love that is unimaginable here on earth, Princes and Princesses of the Ruler of all of Creation.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:25 pm |
    • jnab

      Oh shut up. It's people like you who drive hate and cause wars.

      June 14, 2011 at 6:29 pm |
    • Iheartyou

      jnab: where are the "like" buttons on these darn posts!!! iheartyou.

      June 14, 2011 at 6:36 pm |
  2. Nick

    If respectfully suggesting to someone to try another faith is considered bigoted or prejudiced then we value political correctness over one's articulatation of a convicted political correctness. I am a Christian and, if I were to do something that could get me in trouble similar to Congressman Weiner (trust me, I have the potential to.) and a Muslim politely suggested I turn to the Koran and teachings of Mohammed (along with others with whom I'm familar Jesus, Moses, Abraham, and Issac – Islam is in many ways to Christianity as Christianity is to Judiasm – but I digress) she or he should not feel bigoted for living out their sincerel beliefs. Now, if it got to a certain level of harassment, then that's another story.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:23 pm |
    • LinCA

      By saying: "Dear Congressman Weiner: There is no effective ‘treatment’ for sin. Only atonement, found only in Jesus Christ." (emphasis added), he dismisses Weiner's religion by claiming that his own is the only way.

      That is textbook bigotry.

      June 14, 2011 at 6:35 pm |
  3. keylargo

    Oh great, a holy-roller, "holier than thou" type is going to plug his business. He'll save Weiner, for a big contribution, yeah he may even sprinkle some holy water on him. Then they'll all hold hands and talk to the invisible man in the sky, then "presto" Weiner's a saint, just like Ted Haggard, or Jim Tressell.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:22 pm |
    • Eric

      Believing in Jesus does not make you an instant saint. That's just delusional. We are still sinful, but we have confessed our sin.

      June 14, 2011 at 6:44 pm |
  4. Stacey

    As a Jew, he already has a code of conduct in his Torah. He does not need to convert to Christianity or any other religion in order to have good moral values. The pastor I guess was just saying what he's been trained to say. Similarly, I was with a patient who declared his faith (he was not Christian) and asked for a chaplain to visit him in the Emergency Dept. The ED people sent a Christian pastor and the patient had to listen to a mini sermon about Jesus while he was in agony. While the patient is in agony is not the right time to try to convert him, but again... this is all the pastor knows. I doubt there was any malice intended on the part of either pastor... poor timing perhaps.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
    • Ben D

      "Poor timing" only if the pastors are wrong and people don't actually need Jesus to escape God's wrath. I'm surprised this even showed up on CNN - liberal media very rarely covers conservative Christianity. And no, the guy who thought the rapture was going to happen isn't a conservative Christian.

      June 14, 2011 at 6:30 pm |
  5. emrldisle

    hahahahaaaaa.............let me know how that goes!!!!!!

    June 14, 2011 at 6:18 pm |
  6. JohnRJ08

    Oh puh-leeze! Weiner is Jewish. Is this clown implying that Weiner's religion played some role in his behavior? I cannot believe what comes out of the mouth of some of these evangelicals.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:17 pm |
    • DaBears!

      Hey whoa don't get so worked up there! There wasn't any implication of Jewish influence upon his behavior.

      June 14, 2011 at 6:28 pm |
  7. Don

    Anyone who has found something which they feel works for them should be free to recommend it to others. That something could be a certain religion or counseling or a rehab program. Plain and simple. That doesn't mean what works for you will work for someone else but you should be free to recommend it.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:17 pm |
  8. Teena

    So, what about ALL the catholic priest pedophiles? Did they try Jesus?
    Right wing hypocrysy at its finest!

    June 14, 2011 at 6:16 pm |
    • Erm

      Ah, but Evangelicals don't consider Catholics to be "real" Christians. They consider Catholicism to be a cult. I used to be a Fundie. I've heard it all. As for this guy, I think Stephanie Tanner said it best: "How rude!"

      June 14, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
    • turtle

      Very well said...

      June 14, 2011 at 6:26 pm |
  9. yankeelover1

    Before becoming a Congressman, he was just a skinny ugly nobody who couldn't get a girl if his life depended on it. Now that he has the prestigious position of a Congressman he doesn't know how to handle all these women coming onto him. He never had that kind of attention – I mean, look at him. He's basking in his notoriety that comes with his job. Lose his prestigious job and he goes back to being a skinny ugly nobody and buh bye women including Huma.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:15 pm |
  10. JD

    Yeah my daddy preached about Jesus every Sunday from the pulpit after being a child molester on Saturday nights.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:14 pm |
  11. Steve

    Jesus was Jewish and his weiner was Kosher.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:14 pm |
  12. Jesus

    I wonder who this most respected "Top Baptist Evangelical" preacher, Albert Mohler, has been showing his penis to. I'm sure there are some pictures out there of him showing off his penis while teaching during vacation bible school.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:14 pm |
  13. Marie Kidman


    June 14, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
  14. sleepytime

    Try sending his photos to Jesus?

    June 14, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
    • emrldisle

      .......too funny!!!!

      June 14, 2011 at 6:20 pm |
  15. Pope on a Rope

    Religion is man's unwillingness to accept that their existence is finite and of no great significance.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:13 pm |
    • jnab

      My life is significant.

      June 14, 2011 at 6:21 pm |
  16. Ralph

    Jesus was a Jew too. Weiner is not a religious Jew, just a political one. Mohler is right on target. Weiner needs a renewal of his mind and heart, confession and redemption.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:12 pm |
    • sleepytime

      lol. Maybe he should try Zeus instead.

      June 14, 2011 at 6:14 pm |
    • Luis Wu

      No, Krishna would be better.

      June 14, 2011 at 6:19 pm |
    • Erm

      He already confessed to the one who matters the most: his wife. This preacher needs to mind his own business and stop trying to shove his religion down other people's throats. Weiner is NOT a Christian and that should be respected. I'm amazed that anyone would like believing in someone who lived 2000 years ago makes everything all better.

      June 14, 2011 at 6:23 pm |
    • Stand Up

      He should meditate on a lucky blue rabbit's foot. It works. Just concentrate on how that poor bunny gave up his life to bring you luck, and you can't go wrong.

      June 14, 2011 at 6:29 pm |
  17. Jean

    But, that's what he tried, he took a photo of his big Jesus.
    That didn't quite work out.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
  18. POD

    He's Jewish

    June 14, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
  19. Steve

    Jesus had a weiner too.

    June 14, 2011 at 6:08 pm |
  20. cecilia

    yeah for sure – it is certainly working out well for the religious right perverts

    June 14, 2011 at 6:07 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.