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Obama to swear-in on a stack of historic Bibles
President Obama takes the oath of office in 2009.
January 10th, 2013
02:58 PM ET

Obama to swear-in on a stack of historic Bibles

By Conor Finnegan, CNN

(CNN)-– What do the 16th president, a civil rights leader, and Michelle Obama's grandmother have in common? Their Bibles will be used in the second inauguration of President Barack Obama.

The Presidential Inaugural Committee (PIC) made the announcement on Thursday that Obama will take the oath of office on the Robinson family Bible on Sunday and on the Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King, Jr. Bibles on Monday.

The 20th Amendment designated January 20 as Inauguration Day. But traditionally, when inauguration falls on a Sunday, the president takes the oath privately on January 20 and in a public ceremony on January 21.

"President Obama is honored to use these Bibles at the swearing-in ceremonies," said Steve Kerrigan, President and CEO of the Presidential Inaugural Committee. "On the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington and 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, this historic moment is a reflection of the extraordinary progress we've made as a nation."

FULL STORY
- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Barack Obama • Bible • Christianity • Politics

soundoff (211 Responses)
  1. PresidentAntichrist

    If he's going to use any Bible, then I'm surprised he is not using the Queen James (http://queenjamesbible.com/
    ) and make his blasphemies complete.

    January 15, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
    • midwest rail

      Please delineate said "blasphemies" .

      January 15, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
  2. Bugzie

    Did This Shooting Really Happen Or This Just Wicked Media!? You Be The Judge: The Sandy Hook Shooting Exposed
    IT WAS ALL FAKE

    http://www.worldstarhiphop.com/videos/video.php?v=wshhDdo1mzUx6Z04jdF0

    January 13, 2013 at 7:09 pm |
  3. MN

    WHAT? He will not be holding the QUARAN? He did 4 years ago....my, my....what a cameleon! His muslim faith will not like that...hahaha.....

    January 13, 2013 at 7:03 pm |
    • robc

      Stupid not having a spell check or possibly a clue...utterly false and just proving the right wing and the their abiltiy to speak words hoping that they will become true. Look it up loser

      January 13, 2013 at 9:24 pm |
  4. countrymanjoe

    That is great that he is using a bible from one of are former leaders but he is missing the whole pic.. this country was built on principals. but know are current leader is stripping are rights away little by little an he is doing it right under are eyes. example in god we trust was removed from the pledge said in schools, going against what he campaigned on which was a time for a change lol what change I seen none till know when I find that are pay checks are smaller forced health care which I feel is a joke, an know they want to try an take are 2 amendment right away. DONT kid me guns do not kill people, better screening would be a start. I don't care what they do or say they will not take GUNS from CRMINALS. I do respect are leader but I sure don't have to agree with him an if I land in JAIL 🙂 for sain how I feel then so be it.

    January 13, 2013 at 7:01 pm |
  5. Gir

    Is anybody here comfortable with having by a guy who refuses to disavow 2000 year old myths in the highest office in the land? That's a clear sign that he is prone to suspending logic.

    January 13, 2013 at 5:17 pm |
  6. GayAtheist

    One day, America will progress far enough so we don't have to swear people in on this silly, hateful, UNamerican book.
    I support the NO BOOK CEREMONY.

    January 13, 2013 at 12:40 pm |
  7. sharperthananytwoedgedsword

    The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good. Psalm 14:1 I don't care how many bibles he swears on James 5:12.Now above all, my brothers, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or with any other oath. n Your “yes” must be “yes,” and your “no” must be “no,” so that you won’t fall under judgment. He still doesn't believe in the God of the Bible.

    January 13, 2013 at 10:28 am |
    • GayAtheist

      Matthew 5:22

      But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:42 pm |
      • sharperthananytwoedgedsword

        NO one called you a fool, but God did call man to live a righteous life before him in the sight of man.

        January 13, 2013 at 6:53 pm |
      • sharperthananytwoedgedsword

        I never called you a fool nor am I condemning you. Jesus said you are already condemned for not believing in the in only begotten Son of God. John 3:36 God is the only one that is able to call anyone a fool. Why you're taking scripture out of context I will never know. Don't die in your sins, because there is one appointment nobody is going to miss.

        January 14, 2013 at 10:23 pm |
    • incady

      Since you're quoting fiction, I'll quote from fiction as well: Who's the more foolish? The fool, or the fool who follows him?

      January 13, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
      • sharperthananytwoedgedsword

        prove it to be fiction.

        January 13, 2013 at 6:54 pm |
      • sharperthananytwoedgedsword

        prove it is fiction!

        January 13, 2013 at 6:55 pm |
      • sharperthananytwoedgedsword

        prove it as fiction. its the most accurate book ever composed. you can't find that much accuracy in the Koran.

        January 14, 2013 at 10:19 pm |
    • 0G-No gods, ghosts, goblins or ghouls

      NotSoSharp, it is believers that claim The Babble is not fiction and that god exists therefore it is up to them to prove their claims. In the absence of proof, the normal position is to withhold belief. Please proceed.

      January 13, 2013 at 6:58 pm |
      • sharperthananytwoedgedsword

        If I were a gambling man, that is a bet that even I am not foolish enough to take. The problem is you don't God or Jesus Chris exists. Maybe something happened to you that made you reject the Lord. Maybe you were forced to go to church Sunday through Saturday as a child without your parents explaining or maybe you've seen too many bad examples by watching too much TBN. It is the lack of knowledge of God that causes people to perish. You know that you believe in God or else you wouldn't have challenged the comment. The Lord can save you too.

        January 14, 2013 at 10:17 pm |
  8. religions_5uck

    And religious sheep demand freedom of religion, as long as it's their religion!

    January 13, 2013 at 4:56 am |
    • lol??

      Origin of rights, kid. You didn't inherit that from the chimps, chump.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:35 pm |
    • incady

      @lol – yes, he did. So did you.

      January 13, 2013 at 1:23 pm |
  9. m

    I bet the Koran was hiding in that stack!

    January 12, 2013 at 6:40 pm |
  10. capitalist

    Why don't they use the US Const.tution which they swore to protect ? Wait ... Wait I forgot ... the US Prez duty is to protect Israel, hence the bible ; -) ( BTW: have nothing against Israel's right to protect itself )

    January 12, 2013 at 1:06 pm |
    • Gerry from Bayonne

      Who gives a crap what you believe???

      January 12, 2013 at 8:17 pm |
    • Hobbly Sloppy

      I don't give an f what Gerry Be Gone believe ;-0

      January 13, 2013 at 1:40 am |
  11. It is Called

    Can't be taught as fact!!!!

    According to courts can't teach ID/creationism in public schools in US.
    NOVA | Intelligent Design on Trial
    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/evolution/intelligent-design-trial.html
    Nov 13, 2007 – Featuring trial reenactments based on court transcripts and interviews with key participants, including expert scientists and Dover parents,

    January 12, 2013 at 8:33 am |
    • lol??

      The courts have assumed a lot of teaching powers. Observe all the killa mommies.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:38 pm |
    • Origin of life

      @lol??

      Simple blood test will tell you what % of APE is in your DNA

      Origin of Life no religions needed.

      They just want $$$$$$$$$$$$$$ and votes

      NOVA: Decoding Neanderthals – PBS Pressroom
      pressroom.pbs.org/.../n/NOVA/4002-Decoding-Neanderthals.aspx
      NOVA: Decoding Neanderthals. Wednesday, January 9, 2013, 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET. Check your local listings. Decoding Neanderthals Ep Main. Find out what

      January 13, 2013 at 3:09 pm |
  12. Reality

    Only for the new members of this blog:------–>>>>>>>

    The Jefferson bible would have been a better choice as TJ removed all of the supernatural mumbo jumbo from his bible to include the insane Book of Revelation.

    Other "better" choices, Hammurabi's Code, the Egyptian Book of the Dead, and/or the New Torah for Modern Minds, http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=F20E1EFE35540C7A8CDDAA0894DA404482

    From the Egyptian Book of the Dead-

    "Hail to thee, great God, Lord of the Two Truths. I have come unto thee, my Lord, that thou mayest bring me to see thy beauty. I know thee, I know thy name, I know the names of the 42 Gods who are with thee in this broad hall of the Two Truths . . . Behold, I am come unto thee. I have brought thee truth; I have done away with sin for thee. I have not sinned against anyone. I have not mistreated people. I have not done evil instead of righteousness . . .

    I have not reviled the God.

    I have not laid violent hands on an orphan.

    I have not done what the God abominates . . .

    I have not killed; I have not turned anyone over to a killer.

    I have not caused anyone's suffering . . .

    I have not copulated (illicitly); I have not been unchaste.

    I have not increased nor diminished the measure, I have not diminished the palm; I have not encroached upon the fields.
    I have not added to the balance weights; I have not tempered with the plumb bob of the balance.
    I have not taken milk from a child's mouth; I have not driven small cattle from their herbage...
    I have not stopped (the flow of) water in its seasons; I have not built a dam against flowing water.
    I have not quenched a fire in its time . . .
    I have not kept cattle away from the God's property.
    I have not blocked the God at his processions."

    "The Book of the Dead was written circa 1800 BCE. 2 The Schofield Reference Bible estimates that the Hebrew Exodus from Egypt and the provision of the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai occurred in 1491 BCE., some three centuries later. Many religious liberals, historians, and secularists have concluded that the Hebrew Scripture's Ten Commandments were based on this earlier docu-ment, rather than vice-versa."

    January 12, 2013 at 7:30 am |
  13. GodsPeople

    he should be swearing on the quran he holds most holy, while standing under the islamic and kenyan flags to represent his true faith and his true birthplace.

    January 12, 2013 at 7:22 am |
    • capitalist

      @Gods: you are right. But he won the election, didn't he , Rover ? So even if you are mad as heelll that he is using the bible, Obama do get to choose what to use for America's inauguration 😉

      January 12, 2013 at 1:08 pm |
    • your to phunny

      You should be wearing a white sheet and a pointy hood to represent yourself truthfully. I have as many facts proving you are a memeber of the KKK as you do your claim about obama.

      January 12, 2013 at 8:08 pm |
    • lol??

      If the pope can claim to be a mediator the Big O can claim to be an even bigger mediator, a religious mediator. That's what being a hero is all about.

      January 13, 2013 at 12:41 pm |
    • asdrel

      When, oh when will foolish people who are so wrapped up in mindless hate get over their blind believe in this birther nonsense.

      January 13, 2013 at 1:52 pm |
  14. I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

    @Larry Hannah,

    "... taking an oath to the Presidential office just gives to the illusion that we are a christian nation."

    No, taking an oath is required by the Const!tution:

    Article II, Section I
    I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Const!tution of the United States.

    Voluntarily placing one's hand on a bible and adding words not specified in the Const!tution such as "so help me God" is a tradition started by George Washington and is what confuses the issue.

    January 11, 2013 at 6:33 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      Ooops – posted in the wrong place.

      (I seem to do that a lot with posts at the bottom of the page!)

      January 11, 2013 at 6:34 pm |
  15. Chad

    The Presidential Inaugural Committee (PIC) made the announcement on Thursday that Obama will take the oath of office on the Robinson family Bible on Sunday and on the Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King, Jr. Bibles on Monday

    glad to hear it!!

    January 11, 2013 at 5:46 pm |
    • Observer

      Maybe he's swearing in on a stack of Bibles in hope that one of them might be the ONE true Bible since all the English versions of the Bible disagree.

      January 11, 2013 at 5:53 pm |
    • Chad

      Yes, there are different translations of the original Greek and Hebrew text, which has survived thousands of years uncorrupted.

      most atheists appear to think that the many different bibles were originally written in English, and they dont agree for some reason. I guess it isnt surprising, but still...

      January 11, 2013 at 5:57 pm |
    • Observer

      Chad,

      Most atheists and agnostics realize that any English Bible is a translation. That's why they find it so amusing when Christians claim to know exactly what the Bible meant.

      January 11, 2013 at 6:01 pm |
    • Grundig Glasswerks

      Chad gets a shasta blasta from his homies each time he posts.

      January 11, 2013 at 6:02 pm |
    • Chad

      @Observer "Most atheists and agnostics realize that any English Bible is a translation. That's why they find it so amusing when Christians claim to know exactly what the Bible meant."

      @Chad "1. where do you see Christians claiming that they know exactly what the bible means?
      2. What translation differences do you see as being large enough to warrant any discussion at all?"

      January 11, 2013 at 6:24 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      Where? Are you kidding? Or blind?

      January 11, 2013 at 6:29 pm |
    • Observer

      Chad,

      1. I see Christians all the time feeling they know what is meant. That's how they "know" that picking on gays for an abomination (like eating lobster and Alaskan King crab) is more important than following the Golden Rule.

      2. If I wanted to know is the greatest among faith, hope and charity, it's multiple choice.

      January 11, 2013 at 6:30 pm |
    • Chad

      And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13 NIV
      And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13 NKJV
      And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity. 1 Corinthians 13 KJV

      The greek word for love "agapē" is translated love, or charity in the case of king james.
      Agápe (ἀγάπη agápē[1]) means "love," such as in the term s'agapo (Σ'αγαπώ), which means "I love you." In Ancient Greek, it often refers to a general affection or deeper sense of "true love" rather than the attraction suggested by "eros." Agape is used in the biblical passage known as the "love chapter," 1 Corinthians 13, and is described there and throughout the New Testament as sacrificial love. Agape is also used in ancient texts to denote feelings for one's children and the feelings for a spouse, and it was also used to refer to a love feast. It can also be described as the feeling of being content or holding one in high regard. Agape was appropriated by Christians for use to express the unconditional love of God

      so.. you lost me.. where do you see a difference?

      January 11, 2013 at 6:40 pm |
    • Observer

      Chad,

      "the greatest of these is love"

      "the greatest of these is charity"

      No difference to you? WOW! Do you tell your wife or girlfriend "I charity you" or don't you know the difference?

      Your pitiful attempts at rebuttals are extremely humorous. Please try to get serious sometime. Your answers are jokes..

      January 11, 2013 at 6:46 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Piper's Son

      It doesn't matter what he tells "her." "She" is an inflatable date.

      January 11, 2013 at 6:47 pm |
    • Chad

      think you are clutching at straws 🙂

      King James used the English of it's time, NIV uses the English of 20th century.

      pretty straightforward

      January 11, 2013 at 6:54 pm |
    • Observer

      Chad,

      Pitiful.

      Keep impressing people by saying you can't tell the difference between supporting charity or making love. Is that how your girlfriend/wife feels about you?

      January 11, 2013 at 7:00 pm |
    • Chad

      🙂
      this may help dispel your confusion, unfortunately if you real purpose is to attempt to create an issue where non exists, it doesnt help you much.

      "Charity is also a term in Christian theology (one of the three virtues), meaning loving kindness towards others; it is held to be the ultimate perfection of the human spirit, because it is said to both glorify and reflect the nature of God. In its most extreme form charity can be self-sacrificial. Charity is one conventional English translation of the Greek term agape."

      January 11, 2013 at 7:17 pm |
    • Tom, Tom, the Other One

      Chad, agape means mouth wide open, as when you are staring at the sun. You shouldn't do that, you know?

      January 11, 2013 at 10:54 pm |
    • Chad

      agápē is a Greek word, it is translated into English as "charity" or "love"

      You are getting confused again, thinking that the bible was originally written in english..

      January 12, 2013 at 10:42 am |
    • counter

      Well, what most radical atheist types don't realize is that Christians in many cases go back to the greek and hebrew to get the meaning of what God wants to communicate pinned down.
      Their real problem is that they don't believe. No one but themselves can help them on that that one.

      January 12, 2013 at 9:34 pm |
    • Realitycheck

      What's really funny is Chad is posting his arguments politely, and using detailed references to support his arguments.

      And all his opponents are posting Ad Hominem attacks, with no real arguments at all, and no references.

      I can see who the real winner is here.

      January 13, 2013 at 3:12 am |
    • Jack

      It does not matter in the least because he will continue to say one thing and do the other as he wishes.

      January 13, 2013 at 10:09 am |
    • Kevin H

      I continue to be amused and amazed by people who take the Bible at faith but never question its content, origins or try to understand the texts in the culture of the time. I spent more than a few years studying a couple of different languages. I learned a few things along the way. Translation is not an exact science. Translators can disagree; translation carries with it bias. Cultural and historical context is exceedingly important to translation. Remove these and you will mistranslate. The Bible is full of religious politics from inception to current day. Seeing those texts in context completely changes their meaning.

      January 13, 2013 at 3:51 pm |
  16. Tom, Tom, the Other One

    I'm disappointed that Obama won't be swinging a dead cat over his head at moonlight. He should be more inclusive.

    January 11, 2013 at 5:21 pm |
  17. Sane Person

    Why isn't he swearing in on the quran or the gita?

    January 11, 2013 at 3:22 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      wouldn't matter to me - bible, koran, tanakh... all books of myth that have no place in politics.

      January 11, 2013 at 3:38 pm |
    • your to phunny

      Why would he?

      January 12, 2013 at 8:14 pm |
  18. Bootyfunk

    the president swearing on a book that has unicorns, dragons and satyrs in it. LOL!

    January 11, 2013 at 3:15 pm |
  19. Anu

    Here's a thought. Our government is spelled out by the US Consti tution. Perhaps the POTUS should hold one hand on that, and affirm his oath to it, and the people, rather than swearing on a book that 20% of the population do not consider relevant.

    January 11, 2013 at 1:02 pm |
    • meifumado

      I agree with you 100%

      January 11, 2013 at 2:12 pm |
  20. Larry Hannah

    Can't wait until we get that president with enough balls to say no to this non-sense. This is the kind of thing that continues to propagate the myth that the U.S is a christian nation.

    January 11, 2013 at 12:30 pm |
    • Uncouth Swain

      You are just a few centuries off....try John Quincy Adams and research what he did his oath on.

      January 11, 2013 at 12:43 pm |
    • Larry Hannah

      The point is it should stop entirely. If they want to throw out the "God Blesses's" and the like fine, but taking an oath to the Presidential office just gives to the illusion that we are a christian nation.

      January 11, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @Larry Hannah, (reposted)

      "... taking an oath to the Presidential office just gives to the illusion that we are a christian nation."

      No, taking an oath is required by the Const!tution:

      Article II, Section I
      I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Const!tution of the United States.

      Voluntarily placing one's hand on a bible and adding words not specified in the Const!tution such as "so help me God" is a tradition started by George Washington and is what confuses the issue.

      January 11, 2013 at 6:33 pm |
    • therealpeace2all

      @GOPer

      Spot on, my friend.

      Peace...

      January 11, 2013 at 6:35 pm |
    • Larry Hannah

      @GOPer Sorry meant to say taking an oath on the Bible gives the illusion. Im all for taking oaths for office..just not on the Bible or any religious texts

      January 12, 2013 at 12:24 am |
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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.