This week my church office has received a series of faxes and a packet of information – including DVDs – that attack Barack Obama on religious grounds. The information comes from a new organization called “The Judeo-Christian View.”
The Chicago Tribune reports the attack faxes and mailings have been distributed across the country:
Dozens of pastors and rabbis across the country are urging their peers to pray for Barack Obama’s repentance and telling their congregations to do the same on Sunday before Election Day. They contend that Obama’s liberal policies on marriage and abortion will fuel tensions with the Muslim world.
Packaged with the inaugural edition of The Judeo-Christian View, a new "multimedia journal" mailed to more than 325,000 clergy this week, is a "video sermon" mixing Bible verses with the positions of the Democratic candidate and his Republican opponent Sen. John McCain. It also includes a copy of "Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West" and a letter signed by dozens of clergy…
The 7-minute DVD sermon—available in mild and graphic versions (the mild version omits the pictures of men smooching)—questions Obama’s policies on same-sex unions, integration of openly gay men and women into the U.S. military, and partial-birth abortion
"Full embrace of homosexual unions by our nation and the next administration would tell violent Islamists that the infidel USA has expressly rejected once-shared Abrahamic, Mosaic and Christian teaching regarding ‘sodomy,'" said the letter. "So too would flagrant ‘gay integration’ of our overseas military forces. We advocate ‘love the sinner, hate the sin’; militant Islamists would murder our fellow Americans for sexual error, as well as us for offering them hope and forgiveness!"
The information contained in the material directly accuses Senator Obama of supporting child sacrifice. The Senator is also linked with fundamentalist Islam. In their words:
Our nation faces a fork, a divergence between the high road and the low road -- and you and your congregation could very well determine the direction we take. The high road upholds America's peaceful tradition of Judeo-Christian tolerance and morality. The low road marches us toward militant secular-paganism, militant Islam, or both.
The high road upholds traditional marriage between one man and one woman, and the sanctity of innocent human life that springs from such unions. The low road favors homosexual "marriage" and child sacrifice (we're not referring to familiar abortion here – see below).
The high road upholds the rights of pastors, priests and rabbis to "speak truth to power" in the tradition of Moses, Elijah, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, (and for Christians) John the Baptist, Peter, Paul, Stephen and Jesus. The low road would officially censor the Judeo-Christian view from the public square.
Let’s be clear about what is really is: bigoted hate speech from the fringes of America’s religious community. Among the supporters of this material is Dr. Wiley S. Drake, Sr. He’s the Southern Baptist who recently prayed that watchdogs concerned about his church’s political activity would die.
Dozens of people may have signed on to support this mass mailing but nothing included in their written material or the DVDs is representative of mainstream Christianity or Judaism. In fact, many hundreds of clergy acting in their own capacity have endorsed Barack Obama.
During the Democratic National Convention in Denver - which I attended - religious leaders from across America came to support Senator Obama. Some pro-choice. Some pro-life. But all committed to healing the divisions that face the United States today.
When I endorsed Senator Obama in June 2007 it was with these words:
As a minister in the United Church of Christ, I trust deeply in the Constitutional principle of separation of church and state and my endorsement is therefore a personal one and does not reflect on the church I serve or my denomination. But as a citizen I believe that all Americans must engage in the political process as individuals for democracy to thrive. So I choose to add my voice today with millions of other Americans concerned about the direction of this nation.
Barack Obama has shown leadership on the most pressing moral issues of our day – such as the war in Iraq and the global AIDS crisis. During his time in the Illinois Legislature and in the United States Senate he has demonstrated that his values cannot be compromised by prevailing political winds.
Christians, Jews, Muslims – all people of faith in America – share in a deep and abiding love for this nation. But many of us, as William Sloane Coffin would have said, have a “lover’s quarrel” with America. We know things can be better. We know all Americans need health care. We know that no one should be homeless in the world’s richest nation. We know that global warming threatens God’s own earth and that as the stewards of creation we are called forth to protect this planet. We are also called to be peacemakers in times of conflict.
Barack Obama shares these values and when elected president will embody them as he makes decisions in the Oval Office. When that day comes we will be a better nation.
Senator Obama's conduct in this campaign has only caused me to believe more deeply in his leadership qualities and character. It is no suprise that the majority of all religious people in America are today supporting Senator Obama's efforts to change this nation. Americans see Barack Obama for what he is: a man of deep faith committed to ending the war, providing health care for all Americans, combating poverty and reconciling the broken parts of our nation.
The extremists behind “The Judeo-Christian View” have decided that their only chance to defeat Senator Obama is by pedaling hate and fear. In 6 days we can show them that their rhetoric and their lies have no place in American politics or our houses of worship.