Jan LaRue: The Obama Clergy Call
This column originally appeared on American Thinker on August 27, 2009.
ObamaCare needs a crash cart. It’s so ominous that President Barack Obama is partnering with God and the God-squad to keep the American people from pulling the plug.
“Thousands of religious leaders got a call from on high last Wednesday when Obama reached out to Jewish and Christian clergy, urging them to push health care reform from the pulpit,” according to Fox News. “We are God’s partners in matters of life and death” Obama told rabbis in an earlier call Wednesday, according to Ben Smith at Politico.com.
Notice that Obama didn’t refer to it as “serving” God. Obama is partnering with God on life and death. Are we feeling better yet?
Following the administration’s compulsory tenet, “never let a crisis go to waste,” Obama simply parted the “wall of separation” between church and state in hope that the Republicans will drown in his sea of red ink.
Apparently Obama has converted from his position in 2004: “I think there is an enormous danger on the part of public figures to rationalize or justify their actions by claiming God’s mandate.” Partnering with God to accomplish “necessary reform” sounds like a mandate.
At CNN’s “Compassion Forum,” in 2008, Obama said those in the public square shouldn’t claim a “direct line to God”:
And the biggest danger, I think, for those of us of religious faith when we’re in the public sphere is a certain self-righteousness, where we start thinking that, “Well, you know, I’ve got a direct line to God.” You know, that is incompatible with democracy. You may have a direct line to God. But, you know, that is not — the public square is not the place for us to empower ourselves in that way.
The problem with Obama’s clergy call is, if you criticize Obama’s plan, according to Obama, you’re “bearing false witness.” Apparently, Moses is the new White House Truth Czar. David Brody of CBN called it a “slap down”:
When the President got on that Wednesday conference call sponsored by progressive and moderate faith leaders he said some of his critics are “bearing false witness”. Well it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that he’s definitely referring (not exclusively) to people who are talking about these death panels and government funding of abortion. Guess what? He’s talking about conservative Evangelical groups. When you come out on a FAITH conference call and use the words, “bearing false witness” that is a direct slap down of conservative Evangelical groups.
God’s new junior “partner” should follow his own advice by reading the company manual. On the subject of making public policy, it was Obama who said [at 42 seconds on the tape]: “So before we get carried away, let’s read our Bibles. Folks haven’t been reading their Bible.”
How about giving us chapter and verse on God’s mandate for government-run health care, especially if it includes funding for abortion and end of life counseling panels for seniors and the infirm?
Obama reads the Bible much like he reads the “living constitution.” He told Cathleen Falsani of the Chicago Sun-Times in 2004: “I’m rooted in the Christian tradition. I believe that there are many paths to the same place, and that is a belief that there is a higher power, a belief that we are connected as a people.
Falsani recognized that Obama’s theology contradicts Christ’s words:
It’s perhaps an unlikely theological position for someone who places his faith squarely at the feet of Jesus to take, saying essentially that all people of faith — Christians, Jews, Muslims, animists, everyone — know the same God.
That depends, Obama says, on how a particular verse from the Gospel of John, where Jesus says, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but by me,” is heard.
Obama expects us to take him at his word on matters of life and death, but he questions Jesus’ words on something as vital as salvation. Call it skepticism, but don’t call it “rooted in the Christian tradition.”
“Let me be clear” is Obama’s “pet phrase.” Obama can speak clearly but Jesus can’t?
Yet, Obama thinks he’s heard God clearly on the right way to reform health care, clearly enough to say “preach it, brother.”
Speaking of Moses, the Books of the Law include many essential public health regulations, but there’s nothing directing government to provide anything close to ObamaCare.
The Great Physician healed lots of sick folks, but He never billed Caesar, or lobbied Rome or Jerusalem for health care.
Obama urged the clergy to “tell the stories of health care dilemmas to illustrate what is at stake” in their sermons. The Obama version of the woman who was healed after touching Jesus’ robe might sound something like this:
It is absolutely tragic that in the most prosperous nation on earth a woman suffers a debilitating illness for 12 years because of George Bush and a vast right-wing Republican conspiracy. It’s another example of doctors who over-charged and misdiagnosed a patient, and made things worse. Then greedy insurance companies denied her coverage because of her pre-existing condition. Daughter, Obamacare is here for you. I’ve appointed a Prognosis Czar and a panel of waste-cutters who will decide if you can be made well. If it costs too much, we’ll get some pain killers to you via the postal service. Go in hope and change.
Obama said that if elected, he was “absolutely certain that generations from now, we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment when we began to provide care for the sick.”
And that’s about how long it will take to see a doctor under Obamacare. Try to get a window seat so you can watch the oceans recede and the planet heal while you wait.