Friday, July 13, 2007

Thomas Jefferson wasn't a Christian either

Not that often you'll get Keith Olbermann and Ed Morrissey agree -- but on this one there should be no disagreement about the disgraceful events that happened yesterday in the US Senate.

It's been a long standing tradition for the Senate to invite ministers from a variety of faith groups to lead the daily benediction that opens the day's session -- an attempt to reflect America's diverse religious cultures. Yesterday, the job was seconded to a Hindu, a first. No sooner had this minister begun his prayer -- correction, he just stepped up to the podium -- when three so-called Christian fundamentalists in the peanut gallery began to shout him down: "No Lord but Christ" and "There's only one true God."

It got worse. A right-wing website denounced the Senators for not standing up for the protestors as "the Founding Fathers would have."

Um, most of the Framers were Deists, not Christians as we understand the term today. They believed in God of course, not necessarily the twelve articles in the Nicene Creed. Thomas Jefferson actually edited a Bible that ended with Jesus being buried -- no resurrection, no Acts of the Apostles, nothing. And the writings of Jefferson and George Washington indicated their respect for Islam.

To call yesterday's happenings disgraceful would belie the point. The Kingdom Now movement is alive and well and is a threat to democracy. This verbal attack was just the start. I'm a Christian and this brings dishonour to Jesus of Nazareth who stuck out his neck and ministered to the Samaritans.

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