The Gospel according to Obama
President Obama is not just a racial trailblazer, but some say a religious pioneer as well. No president has ever shared his type of Christianity, historians say. Some say he may revive a form of Christianity that once dominated America.
October 21st, 2012
06:59 AM ET

The Gospel according to Obama

By John Blake, CNN

President Barack Obama was sharing a pulpit one day with a conservative Christian leader when a revealing exchange took place.

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback, a conservative Christian who has taken public stands against abortion and same-sex marriage, had joined Obama for an AIDS summit. They were speaking before a conservative megachurch filled with white evangelicals.

When Brownback rose to speak, he joked that he had joined Obama earlier at an NAACP meeting where Obama was treated like Elvis and he was virtually ignored. Turning to Obama, a smiling Brownback said, “Welcome to my house!”

The audience exploded with laughter and applause. Obama rose, walked before the congregation and then declared:

“There is one thing I have to say, Sam. This is my house, too. This is God’s house.”

Historians may remember Obama as the nation’s first black president, but he’s also a religious pioneer. He’s not only changed people’s perception of who can be president, some scholars and pastors say, but he’s also expanding the definition of who can be a Christian by challenging the religious right’s domination of the national stage.

When Obama invoked Jesus to support same-sex marriage, framed health care as a moral imperative to care for “the least of these,’’ and once urged people to read their Bible but just not literally, he was invoking another Christian tradition that once dominated American public life so much that it gave the nation its first megachurches, historians say.

“Barack Obama has referred to his faith more times than most presidents ever have, but for many it’s the wrong kind of faith,” says Jim Wallis, head of Sojourners, an evangelical activist group based in Washington that focuses on poverty and social justice issues.

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“It is not the faith of the religious right. It’s about things that they don’t talk about. It’s about how the Bible is full of God’s clear instruction to care for the poor.”

Some see a 'different' kind of Christian

Obama is a progressive Christian who blends the emotional fire of the African-American church, the ecumenical outlook of contemporary Protestantism, and the activism of the Social Gospel, a late 19th-century movement whose leaders faulted American churches for focusing too much on personal salvation while ignoring the conditions that led to pervasive poverty.

No other president has shared the hybrid faith that Obama displays, says Diana Butler Bass, a historian and author of “Christianity after Religion.”

“The kind of faith that Obama articulates is not the sort of Christianity that’s understood by the media or by a large swath of Christians in the U.S.,” says Bass, a progressive Christian. “He’s a different kind of Christian, and the media and the public awareness needs to reawaken to that fact.”

Some Christians, however, still see Obama as the “other.” He doesn’t act or talk like other Christians, says the Rev. Gary Cass, a conservative Christian president of the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission.

“I just don’t see or hear in his accounts the kind of things that I’ve heard as a minister for over 25 years coming from the mouths of people who have genuinely converted to Christianity,” says Cass, pastor of Christ Church in San Diego.

Cass says he’s never heard Obama say he’s “born-again.” There’s no emotional conversion story to hang onto.

Obama talks about his faith and attends church, but Cass says that doesn’t mean he’s a Christian.

“Joining a church doesn’t mean you’re a Christian. “You can put me in the garage, but that doesn’t turn me into a car.”

The origins of Obama’s faith

The suspicion about Obama’s faith may seem odd at first because he’s written and spoken so much about his spiritual evolution in his two autobiographies, “Dreams of my Father” and “The Audacity of Hope.” Other books, like “The Faith of Obama” by Stephen Mansfield, also explore Obama’s beliefs.

The 1925 “Monkey” trial of John Scopes, a high school biology teacher who taught evolution, drove fundamentalists underground, some say.

Mansfield says Obama is the first president who wasn’t raised in a Christian home. Obama’s mother was an atheist and his grandparents were religious skeptics (Obama’s family has challenged the description of his mother as an atheist. Obama called her “the most spiritually awakened” person he’d ever known, and his sister called their mother an agnostic).

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

Mansfield called Obama’s boyhood a “religious swirl.  He was exposed to Catholicism, Islam, and strains of Hinduism and Buddhism while growing up in Indonesia during the 1960s.

“In our household, the Bible, the Koran and the Bhagavad Gita sat on the shelf alongside books of Greek and Norse and African mythology,” Obama said in Mansfield’s book. “On Easter or Christmas Day, my mother might drag me to church, just as she dragged me to the Buddhist temple, the Chinese New Year celebration, the Shinto shrine, and ancient Hawaiian burial sites.”

Obama became a Christian while he was a community organizer in Chicago. He joined a predominantly black United Church of Christ. The UCC became the first mainline Protestant denomination to officially support same-sex marriage in 2005.

Obama’s faith showed many of the elements of a liberal Protestant church: an emphasis on the separation of church and state, religious tolerance and the refusal to embrace a literal reading of the Bible.

In a 2006 speech before a Sojourners meeting, Obama talked about his approach to the Bible:

“Which passages of Scripture should guide our public policy? Should we go with Leviticus, which suggests slavery is OK and that eating shellfish is abomination? How about Deuteronomy, which suggests stoning your child if he strays from the faith? Or should we just stick to the Sermon on the Mount – a passage that is so radical that it’s doubtful that our own Defense Department would survive its application?”

When many people think of Obama’s religious experience in Chicago, though, they cite his exposure to the angry sermons of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright and “black liberation theology,” a movement that emerged in the late 1960s and blended the Social Gospel with the black power movement.

Bass, the church historian, says another black pastor shaped Obama’s theology more: the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

He attended liberal Protestant seminaries where he learned about the Social Gospel’s concern for the entire person, soul and body.

Obama has reached out to evangelical leaders like Rick Warren, seen here praying at Obama’s inauguration, but many still doubt his faith.

King once wrote that “any religion that professes to be concerned about the souls of men and is not concerned about the slums that damn them, the economic conditions that strangle them …is a spiritually moribund religion awaiting burial.”

But King and the black church also fused the Social Gospel with an emotional fervor missing from white Protestant churches, Bass says. Other presidents like Franklin Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson were influenced by the Social Gospel, but they weren’t shaped by the black church.

“This is the first time we’re hearing the Social Gospel from the perspective of the black church from the Oval Office. It makes it warmer, more emotive, more communal," Bass says. "There is less fear of linking the Social Gospel with the stories of the Bible, especially the stories of Exodus and Jesus’ healings.”

The emphasis on community uplift - not individual attainment - may strike some Americans as socialist. But the emphasis on community is part of King’s “Beloved Community,” Bass says.

King once wrote that all people are caught up in an “inescapable network of mutuality… I can never be what I ought to be until you are allowed to be what you ought to be.”

“When I listen to Obama, I don’t hear communism, I hear the Beloved Community,” Bass says. “But a lot of white Americans don’t hear that because they never sat in those churches and heard it over and over again. It’s the whole theology that motivated MLK and the civil rights movement.”

Obama is not a Christian, some think

For some, Obama’s actions in the Oval Office seem to contradict Christianity.

Jesus was nonviolent. Obama has ramped up drone attacks in Afghanistan that have not only removed terrorists, but killed civilians.

The Bible talks about the sanctity of marriage between a man and a woman. Obama invoked Jesus when he came out in support of same-sex marriage. “The thing at root that we think about is, not only Christ sacrificing himself on our behalf, but it’s also the Golden Rule," Obama told ABC News during his announcement.

Jesus talked about helping the poor. But he never said anything about creating a massive health care law that taxed the rich to help the poor, some Christians argue.

But Wallis of Sojourners says Obama’s push for health care was a supreme example of Christian faith.

A situation where 50 million Americans don’t have health insurance is “a fundamental Christian problem,” Wallis says.

“Health is such a Gospel issue. Jesus was involved in healing all the time, and to have some people excluded from health care because they lack wealth is a fundamental Christian contradiction.”

Wallis has been one of the most persistent defenders of Obama’s faith. But no matter how much Scripture he and others cite, doubts about Obama’s faith have followed him throughout his political career.

Focus on the Family founder James Dobson once said that Obama distorted the traditional understanding of the Bible “to fit his own world, his own confused theology.” The Rev. Franklin Graham, the son of Billy Graham, publicly questioned Obama’s faith, then later apologized.

Conservative Christian books and websites are filled with stories of Obama allegedly trying to suppress the nation’s Christian heritage.

The Rev. Steven Andrew, author of “Making a Strong Nation,” says Obama is trying to change the national motto from “In God we Trust” to “Out of Many, One,” and he’s ordered the Pentagon to remove biblical verses from its daily report.

“That’s the most serious thing someone can do to a nation, trying to separate a nation from God,” he says. “He seems to be trying to change the Christian laws our Founding Fathers made.”

Andrew says Obama is actually an enemy of Christianity. In his book, Andrew argues that the Founding Fathers were Christians who created a “covenant Christian nation” and calls for a “national repentance.”

“I think he’s an anti-Christ,” Andrew says.  Cass, of the Christian Anti-Defamation Commission, says Obama’s emphasis on helping the poor through social justice isn’t Christianity.

Christians who talk about “social justice” are often practicing “warmed-over Marxism,” Cass says.

“Do I believe in caring for the poor and oppressed? Yes. But you don’t do it along the lines of communistic redistributing.”

Obama’s support of same-sex marriage and abortion rights also disqualifies him from being a Christian, Cass says.

“It’s the most pro-abortion administration in the history of America.  On every social issue – the sanctity of life and of marriage between men and women – Obama is on the wrong side of every moral issue,” he says.

He says a progressive Christian is a contradiction.

“No Christian says I believe in Jesus Christ and I reject the Bible,” Cass says. “These progressives who say they’re Christians are liars. They’re using Christianity as a guise to advance their own agenda.”

Cass says he doesn’t know what Obama believes.

“He’s conflicted,” Cass says. “He has Muslim sympathies from his upbringing."

How progressive Christianity lost the public square

There was a time when Obama’s brand of Christianity would have been understood by millions of Americans, historians say.

Obama along with first lady Michelle Obama and their daughters Malia and Sasha leave church after attending a Sunday prayer service.

The Social Gospel and progressive Protestantism dominated the American religious square from the end of the 19th century up to the 1960s. At times, the traditions blended together so seamlessly that it was hard to tell the difference.

The Social Gospel rose out of the excesses of the Gilded Age in the 1880s, when urban poverty spread across America as immigrants crammed into filthy slums to work long hours in unsafe conditions.

Walter Rauschenbusch, a Baptist pastor in a New York slum, urged the church to take “social sins” as seriously as they took individual vices. Churches began feeding the poor and fighting against other social ills.

“The notion that religious people should be about feeding the poor and helping the homeless is a carryover of the Social Gospel,” says Charles Kammer, a religion professor at Wooster College in Ohio. The Social Gospel was adopted by many Protestant churches in the late 19th and early 20th century, says Bass, the church historian. Some of the Social Gospel churches grew popular because they provided the poor with everything from English classes to sewing instructions and basketball leagues.

“The first American megachurches were liberal, Social Gospel urban churches,” Bass says.

The Social Gospel, though, sparked a backlash from a group of pastors during World War I. They were called fundamentalists. They published a pamphlet listing the “fundamentals of the faith:” Biblical inerrancy, the virgin birth, Adam and Eve.

But the fundamentalists lost the battle for public opinion during the “Scopes Monkey Trial” in 1925. John Scopes, a high school science teacher, was tried for violating a Tennessee law that prohibited the teaching of evolution.

Though Scopes lost, fundamentalist Christians were mocked in the press as “anti-intellectual rubes,” and a number of states suspended pending legislation that would have made teaching evolution illegal, says David Felten, author of “Living the Questions: The Wisdom of Progressive Christianity.”

The trial drove fundamentalists underground where they created a subculture, their own media networks, seminaries and megachurches, he says.

That subculture thrives today, Felten says, and has infiltrated the political arena. It has created an “alternative intellectual universe” that denies science, rational thought – and any beliefs that violate their definition of being a Christian, Felten says.

“They have millions of adherents who believe in a literal six day creation and a literal Adam and Eve – so it’s not a stretch to believe that President Obama is a Kenyan-born secret Muslim bent on destroying the country,” Felten says.

Progressive Christians eventually lost the messaging wars to this fundamentalist subculture, Bass says. Their nuanced view of faith couldn’t compete with the “spiritual triumphalism” of conservatives.

“If you get up and say we’re right and we have the truth, then you have a powerful public message,” she says. “They have a theological advantage in the public discourse. It’s comforting to have things clear, to have things black and white.”

The result today is that the Protestant tradition that shapes much of Obama’s Christianity is fading from public view.

The share of Protestant Christians in the United States has dropped below 50% of the population, according to a recent survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life.

White mainline Protestants make up only 15% of the nation’s population, the survey revealed. The study also found that the fastest growing "religious group" in the country is people who are not affiliated with any religion.

Another generation of Christians, though, may bring a new version of progressive Christianity back.

The lines between younger conservative Christians and progressives are blurring, says Marcia Pally, author of “The New Evangelicals: Expanding the Vision of the Common Good.”

Pally spent six years traveling across America to interview evangelicals. She says her research revealed that more than 60% of young evangelicals support more governmental programs to aid the needy, as well as more emphasis on economic justice and environmental protection issues.

“What’s interesting is that these values, associated with Obama and the black Protestant tradition are now also the values of a growing number of white evangelicals,” she says.

Her perspective suggests that Obama’s faith may be treated by history in two ways:

He could be seen as the last embodiment of a progressive version of Christianity that went obsolete.

Or he could be seen as a leader who helped resurrect a dying brand of Christianity for a new generation.

- CNN Writer

Filed under: 2012 Election • Atheism • Barack Obama • Belief • Bible • Books • Christianity • Church • Courts • Creationism • Culture & Science • Culture wars • Evolution • evolvution • Faith • Fundamentalism • Gay marriage • Gay rights • God • History • Homosexuality • Interfaith issues • Obama • Protestant • Religious liberty • Same-sex marriage • Schools • Science

soundoff (8,626 Responses)
  1. Chris

    Anyone Know What Black Liberal Theology Is. People Who Would Read Obamas Books Would Know He Talks About A Guy Name Frank. Frank Marshal Davis he was Obamas Mentor Growing Up Look Him Up. Also People need to look up a Guy Named Raila Odinga. Google Obama & Odinga At Same Time. Anyone Who Reads Dreams Of My Father And Audacity Of Hope Can See Who The Real Obama Is. Obamas father was Muslim And Mother Athiest and people complain about romney being Mormon? Double Standard

    October 21, 2012 at 2:28 pm |
  2. E. Collins

    Did you have to use the word "wrong" which at worst is intended to mislead readers?..or are you simply grammatically illiterate. This reminds me of the sign ""Piano for sale by woman with mahogany finish".

    Get a grip. This is not journalism. It's fear mongering for the masses...no pun intended.

    October 21, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      I agree that it would be more correct for CNN to just point out that Obama is wrong and leave Religion put of it. The economic dream of a Kenyan refugee has lead us to poverty in America.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:34 pm |
  3. Bill

    This was a really good read. Well balanced with multiple points of view. Very well done.
    I have no idea if the president is a Christian. But as a born again Christian myself, I can tell you that I'm not looking for the government to be the bastien of morality. My word! Washington is and always has been a cesspool. Frankly, i would rather have them all steer clear of faith and morality issues. They simply arent equipped.

    October 21, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
  4. Mary

    While your article may touch on some valid and even thought-provoking points, your headline is highly objectionable. Will you have a similar story and headline that discusses Mr. Romney's faith and practices–and how his positions (if anyone can figure them out) may not entirely align with his or any other faith that I'm aware of?

    October 21, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
  5. JOy

    Funny, you far right nuts! No mention has been made of the fact that Ann Romney's father was a avowed atheist.
    No mention of the fact that the Mormons have close associations with Islam, according to multiple accounts on the internet. Check it out.

    The information is not hard to find. Check it out.

    October 21, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • JoeVet

      On the "internet?" Get serious. If you are interested in the truth, go to lds.org or mormon.org, not some hatefilled anti- site full of distortions and outright lies about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. If you don't put in your due diligence and instead throw ignorant hearsay up on these boards, you too are guilty of bearing false witness.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
    • J Sanders

      @JoeVet. I did my research. I read 2 Nephi 5:21 and the LDS Training Manual Lesson regarding choosing a spouse. Simply stated, the Mormon faith has as part of its core beliefs that black people are cursed and until 1978 relegated any black members to second class membership. I don't know for sure, but my "hunch" is that if Gov. Romney were asked whether he disavowed 2 Nephi 5: 21 in the Book of Mormon, he would not answer with an emphatic "NO.". Rather what lawyers call a non responsive answer. Just as some ask or say President Obama is a racist, I could ask or say Gov. Romney is a racist. I do not know the answer to either. Who I vote for will likely be highly influenced by character.

      Believing myself Christian, I recognize it is God's prerogative to call whom he chooses in his own time and in his own way. He is, after all, sovereign. Having accepted that God gives everyone free,will, I can respect the views of athesist, agnostics, Muslims or whomever. In other words, I will not, because I don't think Jesus would have, try to force the acceptance of his atonement for my sins. Romans 13 is instructive regarding of the leaders of nations. Bottom line, according to my Bible, there are no leaders except those appoInted by God. I trust God that his sovereignty is intact and that even evil results in good for those who love the Lord and are called for his purposes.

      October 21, 2012 at 3:04 pm |
    • Scales of Justice

      @JoeVet. I did my research. I read 2 Nephi 5:21 and the LDS Training Manual Lesson regarding choosing a spouse. Simply stated, the Mormon faith has as part of its core beliefs that black people are cursed and until 1978 relegated any black members to second class membership. I don't know for sure, but my "hunch" is that if Gov. Romney were asked whether he disavowed 2 Nephi 5: 21 in the Book of Mormon, he would not answer with an emphatic "NO.". Rather what lawyers call a non responsive answer. Just as some ask or say President Obama is a muslim, I could ask or say Gov. Romney is a racist. I do not know the answer to either. Who I vote for will likely be highly influenced by character.

      Believing myself Christian, I recognize it is God's prerogative to call whom he chooses in his own time and in his own way. He is, after all, sovereign. Having accepted that God gives everyone free,will, I can respect the views of athesist, agnostics, Muslims or whomever. In other words, I will not, because I don't think Jesus would have, try to force the acceptance of his atonement for my sins. Romans 13 is instructive regarding of the leaders of nations. Bottom line, according to my Bible, there are no leaders except those appoInted by God. I trust God that his sovereignty is intact and that even evil results in good for those who love the Lord and are called for his purposes.

      October 21, 2012 at 3:07 pm |
  6. Republican Jesus

    Religion is source of hatred and racism, and ignorance!

    October 21, 2012 at 2:24 pm |
    • MB

      Correct! So stop being religious and follow Christ.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:27 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      Obama is a source of division, racism and hatred, as well.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:28 pm |
  7. rker321

    If the Christian Right is so hung up on religion , how come Republicans are voting for a Mormon? Who we all know are not Christians?

    October 21, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
    • Nonami

      You are so very wrong ... ...research before you spout off!! Mormons ARE Christians...

      October 21, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
  8. BYRON


    October 21, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
    • have some sensibility

      That's ridiculous. It's so chopped up no one can determine the context in which he was speaking to anything here. I tell you what, go ahead and find something using any of the pieces here that is not edited, and then let's talk, OK? Let's see if there is ever any reply....lol.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • george

      It is a highly edited, chopped video and doesn't mean much. President Bush removed his shoes and went to a Mosque in Texas after 911 to make the point that the people behind 911 do not represent Muslims in this country and the majority of the world's Muslims. He was right and President Obama is right to distance himself from the new KKK, who have added American Muslims to a list consisted of Blacks and Jews in the past.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:34 pm |
    • Planned Parenthood Does Not Do Mammograms, Only provides Referrals




      October 21, 2012 at 2:43 pm |
  9. Ryan

    To many CNN is a horrible news network. To many all CNN workers deserve to lose their jobs.

    October 21, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
  10. JoeyC

    First off – There is NO SUCH ANIMAL as a Conservative Christian! Period End of Discussion. Intolerant Christian, Yes! Conservative NO! Here's the deal CHRIST WAS, IS and WILL ALWAYS BE A LIBERAL! He was crucified for his Liberalities not his Conservative stance on issues! When will any of these White Evangelicals get it?!? They are INTOLERANT and therefore do not and cannot be called Conservative Christians. Actually, if the true be told they aren't Christians at all. Reason is simple all their discussion center around hate, intolerance, bigotry and a few other adjectives. Therefore if you don't follow Christ and his mandatuum, then you aren't a Christian. These people who call themselves Conservative Christians are not! They do not follow the message or follow the teachings of Jesus Christ the Liberal. Whenever they need a podium stand on and stand by they use the old testament. Christ message (he says this 21 times in the NT) "Follow Me". He has told his disciples and those who wanted to follow him to let go of the old testament and follow him with his redeeming message! When people get there heads to understand this simple premise they can then call themselves Christians. Until then...Please DO NOT INSULT MY INTELLIGENCE BY SAYING YOU ARE A CONSERVATIVE CHRISTIAN. YOU ARE INTOLERANT FROM THE START UNTIL THE FINISH! AMEN! (Translation of Amen – "SO BE IT!")

    October 21, 2012 at 2:20 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      Christ was cruxified for his conservative beliefs and his insistance on a return to the old ways. The Theocracy had become rotted to the core and needed to end. The book of Enoc had converted more people to Ba'al worship in 200 years than the Jews had done in 3000.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • Steve Campbell

      Christ was not crucified for being a liberal. He was crucified for blasphemy in that he claimed to be the Son of God and God incarnate. The only problem is that He was excatly who he claimed to be which was substantiated by His resurrection. His teachings transcended political ideology but the Bible has plenty to say about the role of government which is primarily to uphold God's laws in civilized society and allow the spread of the Gospel message. What we have now is a government who allows the covetous to forcibly take from those who have more instead of allowing them to give of their wealth freely and condones the most vile of sins, namely abortion and sodomy. A true Christian would not have Muslim sympathies because the Spirit of God would be leading him to search the scriptures and know the truth that Jesus is the only begotten Son of God and not just some teacher or prophet as put forth by the Koran.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
  11. Foxxie Brown

    Is Romney the "right kind of christian"? I Can't vouch for Obama or any man, however, I am weary about voting a mormon and apprehensive of one making decisions that affect my country and millions of lives. I will take my chances with one that at least professes Christ as his Lord over some strange religion that contradicts the bible.

    October 21, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
  12. Ma Sue Bee

    More baloney!! Serves to justify rigid belief systems forced by preachers of dogma. Aimed at stirring the wrath of hardnosed bigots who use any weapon they can to demean and diminish the image of my president. If I were a writer of articles for wide-spread distribution I would discuss the character of the men and women whose principles reflect ideas of great leaders of humanity....like the true and simple words of a man known as Jesus for example..

    October 21, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
  13. marta Paglianni

    Mitt the Great Mormon Lets Vote for this Nice Christian Fellow!!

    1) Mitt Romney: Because of Obamacare,
"over the last two years, health care premiums have gone up - it's true –
but they've gone up slower than any time in the last 50 years." - FALSE
    2) Right now, the
(Congressional Budget Office) says up to 20 million people will lose their
insurance as Obamacare goes into effect next year." – FALSE
    3) Mitt Romney: Barack Obama
"put in place a board that can tell people ultimately what treatments
they're going to receive." – FALSE
    4) Mitt Romney: "In one
year, (President Obama) provided $90 billion in breaks to the green energy world
… into solar and wind, to Solyndra and
Fisker and Tesla and Ener1." — False
    5) "On Medicare for
current retirees, he's cutting $716 billion from the program." – Half TRUE
    6) "The size of our
Navy is at levels not seen since 1916. I will restore our Navy to the size
needed to fulfill our missions by building 15 ships per year, including three
submarines.” – 3 Pinocchios
    7) Mitt said inthe
debate..that he loves teachers..wants more teachers..but right after the
Wisconsin recall election, Mitt came out and said.."See that is proof we
do not need more police, firemen, and teachers..on the tax payer's expense...It
did not sound like Mitt liked Teachers or police or firemen, much back then...
    8) Mitt Romney: Stimulus dollars paid for
"windmills from China." — Mostly False
    9) Mitt
Romney: Says stimulus money went to buy electric cars from Finland as a payback
to Obama supporters. — False
    10) Mitt
Romney: Says Dow Chemical decided to build a plant in Saudi Arabia rather than
Oklahoma due to the impact of environmental regulations on the supply of
natural gas. — False
    11) Mitt Romney: "This president ...
could have gotten crippling sanctions against Iran. He did not." —False
    12) Mitt Romney: "We have, right now,
Hezbollah, which is working throughout Latin America, in Venezuela, in Mexico,
throughout Latin America, which poses a very significant and imminent
threat to the United States of America." — False

    October 21, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
  14. shiningspear

    Little Horn hahahaha

    October 21, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
  15. BKO

    I'd rather go to Hell than spend an eternity with Christians.

    October 21, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      Your wish is granted.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
    • J2

      No worries, according to the Bible self-righteous religious hypocrites w/o love, mercy, compassion aren't going to be in heaven. They are going to knocking at the door but it will be closed to them.

      This is why the BIble is Good News. It's for the rest of us who don't feel like we deserve it but want to finally find a place where we won't keep screwing up but will have all of our faults washed away. Eternal joy; no more sorrow, death, separation from loved ones, hate.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:22 pm |
    • Foxxie Brown

      Careful what you say.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:24 pm |
    • lily

      Well if you believe Mormonism, EVERYONE except them is going to hell, even Mother Teresa. Not to worry though–they will baptise you after you're dead and you'll get a 2nd chance to accept Mormonism before they send you into eternal darkness.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:38 pm |
    • Common Sense

      No, I bet hell is going to be full of these so called "Christians". I don't get this entire article I may not be a religious person now but I was raised as a Catholic and as far as I know care for the poor has always been part of Catholic doctrine.
      Personally in the United States I see no difference between Catholics and Christians both intolerant, both will use bible quotes to justify their selfishness and both will attempt to ostricize "god's" children based on their OWN views. Forgetting we are ALL god's children (or so you say).

      October 21, 2012 at 2:40 pm |
    • Brian

      Living with Christians isn't difficult. Finding people who actually emulate Christ is though.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:58 pm |
    • myriad0815

      Your statement, BKO, should humble those of us in Christian circles; should make us ask ourselves what kind of "light" we are sharing with our neighbors.

      October 21, 2012 at 3:18 pm |
    • Brian


      Yes, brother. I couldn't agree more with you. I always find it interesting that in the Bible the nonreligious and sinners were drawn to Christ, but the pious had Him crucified. Maybe there are some lessons for us there...

      October 21, 2012 at 4:42 pm |
  16. God's Oldest Dreamer

    As it was in the beginning,,,, Nothing really changes. Only the names change. Obama and Romney wear the same suit. Whoever one votes for will not matter. They wear the same pants. Whoever gets elected will not matter. They wear the same tie. Magic underwear is where one draws the strings,,,,

    October 21, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
  17. sue

    Wow...I think I just need to pray for all of humanity based on the 3000+ comments here.

    October 21, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
    • BKO

      Don't force your garbage on those who don't ask for it.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
    • Chris

      that wasn't an official ofcfie but he certainly didn't have anything bad to say about the flag or Guevara did he? Kind of like saying hey I'm a good guy and I don't even mind if my supporters like murderous thugs. But I digress-Guess who else was a Cuban sympathizer? That's right class, Lee Harvey Oswald, a marksmen that never met a communist he didn't like.Now, let us put it all together–Che Guevara was Castro's chief persecutor-er I mean prosecutor, he was personally responsible for the killings of thousands of Cubans. If you need to check that for truth ride on down to Miami and start waving a Guevara flag.-JFK was killed by a Cuban sympathizer (Oswald) or maybe that should be plural depending on who you believe and how tight your tin foil is wrapped.-Teddy (speed racer) and Maria Schriver endorse Obama.-Obama could care less about a Cuban Guevara flag flown in his supporter’s ofcfie.Does the irony escape Teddy and Maria? I’ll have what he’s drinking…The point here is that the Democrats are very quick to forget history and when someone reminds them they are even quicker to dismiss it. Here's another fact for you-One of the former members of the terrorist group Weather Underground, William Ayers, proclaimed in an interview with the New York Times published on 9/11/01 that he didn't regret setting bombs (A series of bombings that occurred in the 70s and included the U.S. Capitol and the Pentagon).Guess who Mr. Ayers supports? That's right, Obama. In fact Mr. Ayers served on The Woods Fund (an anti poverty group) with Obama from 1999 to 2002. Swapping ideas I’d venture.And before any of you say I'm just a white guy railing on a black guy running for President, well I say there is no black guy running for President, Obama is white, at least his mother is but he hasn't said much about that either has he?Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain folks. It’s all about change anyway, the change in your pockets that is.

      November 8, 2012 at 5:35 am |
  18. Im4jhawks

    What an offensive headline! Who can judge the degree of faith of another. I am not a churchgoer but I feel I am a Christian by doing good for my family and community and compassion toward others. I hope no one judges my worthiness by my lack of attendance at my local church. I have friends who claim to be such devout Christians and yet pass around the worst emails spreading racial and discriminatory rumors about the President without checking out any facts. They are always prepared to believe the worst about this administration. They are one of reasons I don't go to church–if they are the example of "good Christians", then I don't want to be a part of it.

    October 21, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
    • Beadles

      Im4jhawks – well said.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:15 pm |
    • J2

      Well said and so sad that that is what the church has become.

      People who best represent what the church is supposed to look like are people like Mother Teresa who served/loved the 'least of these' in the world.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
    • george

      Well said! GOD bless you and bless USA.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
  19. steve

    I guess they have given up on the Muslim angle and now it is "He doesn’t act or talk like other Christians." Obama is a different king of Christian? and therefore not a Christian? What is it with conservatives? They are ignorant, petty people. These are the kind of people that burned witches.

    October 21, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
    • Michael

      And yet they will still wholeheartedly embrace a Mormon due to their hate of Obama, with Billy Graham even recanting his decades long stance that Mormonism is a cult!

      October 21, 2012 at 2:16 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      The cross burner's bible (NIV) contains the same mistranslation in Acts that was used to burn witches. Sacrafices to the Devil have often include human sacrifice (cartihidge et al) and we know from Genesis that the cross burner's god is a burned up stick. Populism burned witches, just as it drives our social democracy today.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
    • sally

      how true

      October 21, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
  20. george

    Our prejudices and per-judgments tell us how we should think. We read a verse and translate it the way we want it to be meant. What I am certain is that when it comes to treating the poor and sick, Jesus is as far away as possible from today's Republican. I said Republican not conservative because we don't have many conservatives in politic since President Eisenhower.

    October 21, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
    • John P. Tarver

      The harm done to Black families by LBJ's great society is an example of Democratic socialism harming the poor.

      October 21, 2012 at 2:20 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.