Evangelicals for Obama?

Consider these figures from the Barna group:

Among non-evangelical, born-again Christians, Obama leads 43-31%. This lead among the born again group is particularly significant, Barna notes, because this would represent the “first time in more than two decades that the born again vote has swung toward the Democratic candidate.”

Among Catholics, Obama has opened a wide lead of 39-29%. Among Protestants, Obama also has a resounding lead of 43-34%.

Barna also noted that the “McCain candidacy does not seem to be gaining momentum among evangelicals,” and his support has in fact “declined significantly.”

Why the shift?

30 thoughts on “Evangelicals for Obama?

  1. Republicans haven’t shown themselves to be especially Christian in their actions or policies?

    Because many question the morality of the Iraq Invasion and the actions leading up to it?

    Because evangelicals are coming to believe that Christian concern is not limited primarily to abortion and gay marriage?

    Because evangelicals are concerned about the environment and are less convinced that the Republicans are?

    The huge number of convictions and scandals surrounding Republicans?

    I’d think there are many reasons, but that basically it comes down to, I’d think, that people are less convinced that Republicans are the party of values, as they portrayed themselves to be.

  2. It’s fortunate for Obama that his views are not known. He is the most pro-abortion candidate and the most liberal candidate in the Senate, after all. He will not support Israel or NATO with military responses. He will introduce a windfall profits tax. Though US oil companies only control 3% of world production, they are going to get the blame for the energy problems and global warming. His liberation theology UCC church membership is not understood for the Marxist roots it represents. He has no experience in administration, management or government leadership. On the other hand, he’s eloquent and inspiring. McCain is busy alienating church-goers and will lose to Obama unless world events impose themselves. The surge worked, but it hasn’t made the news yet, nor will it. Good luck, Barry. You’ve got a shot.

  3. I think people have a pretty good handle on what Obama represents. And what he DOESN’T represent – more of the same morally questionable or outright objectionable policies.

    I think the Dems and other progressive types have done a fairly good job of making the case that it is unfair to assume that the Republican party is the SOLE party of moral values.

  4. Whether or not the Barna group is presenting legitimate numbers (I don’t know that they are), where I live (urban Oregon) seems to be very pro-Obama. The drama that is about to take place in the next year or so with the US election and world events soon to take place (they are beginning already) will be difficult to watch and to participate in.

    That Obama can have a following in America at all shows that a significant percentage of Americans no longer understands what America is or signifies. It’s of no importance to single out “Christians” demographically as having anything to do with real Christianity, since in the main, the Church in America has long abandoned the faith of the fathers and of the bible, no matter what they say or try to be. Relevant they may be, faithful they are not.

    Obama is very likely the scourge of God on the apostate Church in America, and those who are faithful Christians, that is, followers of Jesus, both within and without church organizations, are going to have to suffer the scourge of God along with the apostates. They already have had a lot of practice, those who have stayed in apostate denominations and parishes. Everything that has happened to us has been for training us to be able to withstand even worse things, as the End approaches.

    All Israel went into exile in Babylon, the faithful Jews as well as the apostates. The only consolation for them was that they were suffering as innocent victims for their obedience to YHWH and to Torah. In our day, if it happens, the faithful Christians will suffer the scourge along with the apostates for a similar reason. As Qoheleth says, “There is nothing new under the sun.”

    The willing, gradual surrender of the Church to the enemies of God, to what is called “liberalism” (though it is anything but liberal in the original meaning of the word), brings on the judgment of God, now as it always has. Our surrender to feminism, and its daughters, gay-lesbianism, moral relativism and so on, brings on its specific scourge, in our day, al-Islam, a force that appears to correct these inversions but only replaces them with their extreme opposites.

    This has happened before. Think of the rapidity with which Islam marched practically unopposed across North Africa from Egypt to the Maghrib. Think of what has happened in Europe, or even closer to home, in Canada in our day.

    Apostate Europe is on the threshhold of the demise of its ancient Christian “culture”. (But real Christianity is more than mere “culture.”) Canada is jockeying up to follow its lead. And now, the Union indissoluble is falling down in worshipful surrender before the spectre, the “obamanation” of desolation that has now been set before us in place of God, who accepts this worship, yet is only a mere man whom the ancient enemy has puffed up in order to deceive, and who himself will be pricked as a bubble and disappear when once the purpose is served for which he was created.

    Christ have mercy on us, and strengthen us, brethren, for the time is close.

  5. Obama is very likely the scourge of God on the apostate Church in America, and those who are faithful Christians, that is, followers of Jesus, both within and without church organizations, are going to have to suffer the scourge of God

    The “scourge of God???”

    Really? How so?

  6. Some of us think OBama, with his Clintonian ethics and world tour, might be a friend of the Liar, Danny. He has no orthodoxy in him. Those of us on the orthodox side of Christianity see nothing good in him.

  7. Brother Romanos (or “Rommy” if you prefer), I HAVE read my Bible. I do read my Bible still. I’m unfamiliar with the phrase “Scourge of God,” appearing anywhere in the Bible.

    Doing a little research, I do see that it appears in the Apocrypha, but not being Catholic, I am not especially familiar with the book of Maccabees.

    What I suppose you’re suggesting is that God sometimes “punishes” God’s followers for not following God well.

    I don’t know what the election of Obama for president has to do with us not following God well. I mean, why specifically Obama – who by my measures is much more Christian in his approach to God than Bush, his father before him or Reagan.

    I mean, at least Obama and Clinton (who I strongly disliked and with whom I can’t see any comparison to Obama) went to church!

    So why would you suggest God might “scourge” America for electing Obama? Why not Bush? Why not Clinton or ReaganBush before him?

    It sounds a bit like you have a political agenda to which you’re trying to attach your faith, but maybe I’m hearing you wrong.

  8. Some of us think OBama, with his Clintonian ethics and world tour, might be a friend of the Liar, Danny. He has no orthodoxy in him. Those of us on the orthodox side of Christianity see nothing good in him.

    That is your right. Some of us on the orthodox anabaptist side of Christianity most certainly have a hard time finding good in Bush, although we manage. See, we know that we are all created in the image of God, even those with whom we disagree politically. And brother Bush, no matter how much I disagree with his politics, IS a brother – not a “friend of the Liar.”

    I am sometimes inclined to want to demonize Bush myself, but I try to remember that we are all less than perfect followers of God and try to cut the man some slack. I would suggest that it behooves us to disagree with the policies but not demonize the individual who is, after all, beloved of God and – in the case of Obama and Bush – part of God’s beloved community.

  9. First, let me say that I don’t necessarily want a president who will enact what I think are “Christian policies.” What I don’t want is a president who will enact policies that are hostile towards my Christian beliefs. I don’t want a president, though, who will enact a policy about religious practices or opinions. I’m not interested in establishing a theocracy, I don’t think it would work at a big gov’t level this side of heaven.

    I want a president who will enact policies that are reasonable, sustainable, logical, practical, affordable. If a president is enacting policies like that, then I will be satisfied.

    Having said that, if a president will enact, for instance, reasonable energy policies – ones that don’t deplete natural resources at a rate faster than they can be replaced, ones that don’t base our economy on a finite resource that is rapidly depleting – then that has the result of being helpful to my Christian belief in tending God’s creation.

    In other words, I don’t want a president who will say, “LET’S CREATE LAW SAYING THAT THE EARTH IS GOD’S CREATION AND THAT WE MUST RESPECT IT.” I would be opposed to that sort of legislation. But I do expect our gov’t to have responsible, sustainable energy and resource policies.

    Does that make sense? I want to make clear that I’m not looking for a president who will enact “Christian” policies, but neither do I want a president that will support policies that are hostile to Christianity, or Islam, or Judaism.

  10. Obama appears (note I say, “appears”) to welcome and to encourage all kinds of salutation and worshipful behavior on the part of his followers, who are called “believers”, in a way that has never, to my knowledge, been seen in any prior political candidate in America (unless we consider the oddball case of Mormon prophet Joseph Smith Jr running for the office of President back in 1844 with his follower Sydney Rigdon as running mate).

    A day or two ago I saw for the first time on the internet an image with the words “Obama is God.” Am I being too fussy, or doesn’t this kind of behavior indicate that there is something wrong with the way this campaign is being carried on? It astounds me that thinking people do not notice this hysteria and back away from its instigator.

    As a matter of fact, I am apolitical. I will vote for anyone else for president other than a man who is surrounded by an encampment of followers infected with such extreme and fanatical, religious devotion to him, calling him “messiah”, “savior” and now even “God.” Not since the days of Antiochos Theos and Epiphanios of the same name (yes, in the books of Maccabees, part of the ORTHODOX Bible) have we seen such arrogance and impiety in rulers or would-be rulers. It also reminds me of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini and his followers in Iran in the 1970’s. All haters alike of the Lord YHWH and His people, how can we ignore the signs given by these men and their followers?

  11. Having said that, what I like about Obama’s policies (at least partially because of my faith system) include:

    1. A more reasonable approach to foreign policy. He recognizes that we can’t invade our way to ending terrorism, that we need better ways of dealing with the issue of terrorism than invading countries where we suspect terrorists might be.

    2. To that end, his policy about ending our role in Iraq is a VERY positive thing.

    3. Obama has a policy to “develop whole gov’t initiatives to promote global stability,” that makes good practical (and Christian) sense to me.

    4. He has a plank to “reform gov’t contracting” for military endeavors. There has been too much corruption and waste in this approach – along with some questionable moral conduct by “contractors” – and it is in need of reform

    5. Obama hopes to “restore our alliances.” The past eight years, US policy has been alienating in the world at a time when we need greater cooperation. As I have already stated, we cannot – even if we wanted to – end terrorism or genocide by military responses to each incidence of such behavior, we need greater global cooperation and agreement to constrain such behaviors.

    6. Obama’s energy policy, while not perfect, is saying a lot of the right things. We CAN’T drill ourselves to energy independence and to a responsible energy policy. That can only come from reducing our intake. We are consuming energy at much too high a rate and that WILL change one way or another, but doing it voluntarily and with deliberation makes more sense than having it forced upon us by circumstances.

    7. I agree with his notion that being environmentally friendly is not to say that we would be destroying our economy. Rather, he seems to think (correctly) that we need to recognize that the economy is a subset of the environment, not the other way around. Green jobs will produce income just as well as “dirty” jobs and, that being the case, why not promote/encourage that direction?

    8. I like Obama’s position on governmental ethics and making gov’t more transparent. It is needed.

    For starters.

    Here’s a link to his policy positions.

    Understand that I in no way think Obama (or anyone else) is a perfect candidate nor that he will always make the right decisions. But I do think that the direction we’ve been going in many ways has been wrong and I further think that McCain represents a continuation of existing policy. We need a change in direction.

  12. Romanos said:

    A day or two ago I saw for the first time on the internet an image with the words “Obama is God.” Am I being too fussy

    You are being too fussy.

    Is Obama directing people to call him “God”? “Messiah”?

    No, he is not.

    People are excited about this particular leader and the change he represents. Many people think we have been heading in a REALLY wrong direction these last eight years and are excited not just to have somebody to vote for as opposed to more of the same (like Kerry), but someone who actually seems to represent positive change in a GOOD (morally and logically) direction.

    And, in the excitement, there may be a few who jokingly get carried away (although it is mostly the Right that I’ve seen calling Obama the Messiah, mockingly). But that is not evidence that we ought not vote for Obama.

    I personally have not heard anyone call Obama God or Messiah (other than the Right) or even that he’s a “perfect” candidate. Anyone I am familiar with fully recognizes that he is a flawed human being and a flawed candidate. It’s just that he represents a better direction than the Republicans OR Democrats that have run of late.

  13. Thanks, Dan, for letting me hear the view of a thinking man who thinks it is not to be taken seriously that candidate Obama tolerates (or possibly encourages) his elevation to semi-divine status. I too was young once, a student radical in the 1960’s-70’s, and just because we didn’t deify any of our signal champions doesn’t mean that it’s necessarily an evil or a warning sign that today’s young people (and old) enthusiastically receive the demagogue of their choice with acclamations and epithets historically better suited to Jesus Christ.

    Obama is nonetheless for me a symptom of what is wrong with America and the proof that a man can say true things without speaking the Truth. As we are (sort of) a representative democracy, we will have no one but ourselves to blame if we elect Obama as the next President. The pity is that there is no candidate on the slate that is worthy of being elected President this year, and yet we must elect someone.

    If Obama is elected, at the very least some of us may have to eat very humble pie. If his opponent wins, then we’ll have our work cut out for us.

  14. For what do you fault Obama? I have heard you say that you don’t like him, but in re-reading your comments, I can’t point to anything as to exactly WHY you don’t like him.

    For what it’s worth, if Obama is elected (and I fully expect that to happen), the world won’t end, nor will we find heaven on earth. He will be another in a long line of flawed US presidents.

    Some have been better than others, but I don’t think any of them have been “evil,” just wrong on certain policies. Obama will, I suspect, be a better than average president in facing some difficult times – largely thanks to the last thirty years of presidential and congressional failure to lead as they should have.

  15. I think it would be wise for those who have eyes to see, to look to heaven, where the seated Son of Man waits, and for those who have ears to hear, to listen for the sound of the trumpet blast of His parousia.

  16. Amen. Let us look to Jesus, always. And remember his teachings and the teachings set before us as we discuss our leaders and brothers and sisters in Christ.

    He who conceals hatred has lying lips,And he who spreads slander is a fool… [proverbs]

    For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, slanders. These are the things which defile the man… [Jesus]

    Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice… [Paul]

    …being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them… [Paul]

  17. I think you misunderstood what I said to a degree, Dan–or perhaps, so you will not think ill of me, and for me to lay the blame soley on myself–I must not have been clear enough.

    To discuss politics and governmental regimes and then simply spread ‘Jesus’ on it like peanut butter is the wrong approach. You start with the living Christ and what He has revealed; that He is coming with the kingdom of the heavens, which will rule all governments with a scepter of iron. If one has this in mind, how can they bet their cards on leaders who object to this truth, and actually oppose this in their policies?

    But you see, to the world and most in Christendom, the coming of Christ is fantasy, or perhaps a very nice spiritual principle to be understood allegorically–or even to be snubbed.

    Myself–I am neither a Republican or Democrat, nor a part of any other institution or denomination. I have no time for religion! Am I boasting of this? Please do not think likewise! But the more labels we stick to ourselves, the more we get drug down into the web of the kosmos, in which we must constantly debate nonsense and irrelevance, and taint our witness, which is confessing Christ before men.

    The ruler I want is Christ, reigning on His throne in heavenly glory! No other leader will suffice…May He come tonight…

    And please do not confuse discernment with slander and the other conditions you bolded above.

    Grace and peace…

  18. I was not suggesting that you were slandering anyone. I was suggesting that too many of us establish “political enemies” too easily and then we find it easy to slander, despite clear teachings of Christ not to do so.

  19. Pilgrim said:

    To discuss politics and governmental regimes and then simply spread ‘Jesus’ on it like peanut butter is the wrong approach. You start with the living Christ and what He has revealed

    To clarify, I agree with this strongly. Where I’m not sure if we’re on the same page is that sometimes, following in Jesus’ steps (he who claimed he had come to bring good news to the poor, freedom for captives, health for the ill, the day of God’s good favor), our actions and opinions will have political implications.

    So, while I don’t strongly identify as a Democrat (closer to a Green guy) and certainly not a Republican, I don’t shy away from having opinions that have political ramifications. Which is not to say that I’m in it for the politics, but rather, proclaiming Good News for the poor, for instance, CAN have political ramifications, and we ought not back away from that.

    And, just because we long for that day when there is a perfect Ruler on the throne, does not mean we ought not have opinions about those who rule us now or about the policies our elected officials hold.

    Seems to me.

  20. Dan–we are not on the same page, and the reason why is that I am an extremist. If I must be labeled (and I’m not saying you are labeling me), then I will proudly wear that label for the sake of Christ.

    Nothing else matters, other than a clear testimony of the Lord Jesus Christ. This is the job of those who believe His testimony; to witness to His coming, His saving work and His appearing again.

    To me, everything else is like a pebble compared to this mountain of truth.

    That is why that, if I am going to use my breath, it is going to be used for proclaiming the testimony of Christ Jesus; not in political circular arguments.

  21. And forgive me–but please do not understand this to mean that I am constant in this, or that I am the only one. I do not mean that in the least.

    But I do hope to be more like that each and everyday; each and every second even–pointing to Christ. For He must increase, but most assurdly, I must decrease.

  22. And I am not disagreeing. I am pointing to the Christ who taught us radical ideas like to love our enemies, to overcome evil with good, to proclaim good news to the poor, liberty for the captive.

    The Christ who warned us that it is difficult for the rich to get into heaven, who said, “WOE to you who are rich now,” and “Blessed are the poor.”

    Who taught us that we are saved by God’s grace and challenged us to follow in his sometimes dangerous steps. That is the Jesus whose testimony I am proclaiming.

  23. Excuse me once again, Dan–but are there different Christs? Out of my ignorance, I may not be understanding you clearly, but it seems like you have divided His person into different types, as though you are limiting the limitless One, and as though you have taken only from Him the things that fit your train of thought of what the Christ was, and therefore, which support and transfer into your political and social beliefs for the present.

    Forgive me for being so blatant and bold, but you speak of Him as if He is still in the past; He taught us then. But is He not raised and seated at the right hand of the Power as I speak? And is He not already in the future, waiting for us, as though we must catch up with Him in time? For surely, we are seated with Him in the heavenlies now even.

    And so this is why the eternal Christ cannot fit into the “political now”, because the One without beginning or end has superceded and surpassed all of the structures of the kosmos and has called us to follow Him in Spirit and Truth into the place He has prepared for us.

    I suppose one could take bits and pieces from the teachings revealed in the gospels, apply it to social and political structures, and then have an appearance of a bettered society. But then that leaves out everything else that Christ and the apostles revealed. To do that, one must leave out the One who authored those words, and who is alive and working as I speak, whether I am in the field or not. He is left out, because the kosmos does not want Him, nor do they accept Him.

  24. One Christ. The living God who taught us (2000 years ago – in the past, hence my past tense) many great and important teachings. And whose teachings remain as relevant in the political now as they did back then.

    And yes, Jesus is alive now and still teaching us those same teachings taught back then. All of the teachings.

    The teachings to repent of our sins, of our greed, of our hatred, divisive, warring ways and the teachings to join in following in His steps.

    Pilgrim, it seems you’re looking to paint me in a corner that I’m not in.

  25. I am not trying to paint you in a corner. I’m just trying to understand and discern your statements.

    If I have offended you, please forgive me.

    And again, grace and peace…

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