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Doug Terry

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Religion in America has been corrupted by politics. Rather than have religious beliefs influence politics, the tables have been turned: politics are taking over religions and shaping them to its needs and system of beliefs. When this happens, it is fair for people to ask: why would I want to be part of your religion any more than I would want to be part of your political party?

I am not a theologian and I usually refrain from commenting on religious matters. I dont have to be a university trained minister to know this, however: using ones prayers as a means of condemning other people, particularly for their political views, is wrong. Dead wrong.

Texas Governor Rick Perry, digging around in South Carolina for 2016 presidential primary votes, prayed the following at a political event:

"We ask you to be with our President, give him wisdom, and open his eyes. In your most holy name. Amen."

What does open his eyes mean? It implies that Obama is in deep need of very basic help and Rick knows that and is calling on god to provide it to Obama. This is so wrong on so many levels that it hardly needs explaining. Perry knows Obama is off the track and needs gods help. He is using his prayer before a political group to label the president as misinformed, even ignorant, and at the same time showing the kindness and generosity that prayer implies. Perry is using prayer as a way to pretend to thoughtfulness and religious standards of caring and then condemning Obama in the next breath.

A religious set of beliefs corrupted by politics can not only not help or save the world, it can pull all of us into the kind of conflicts now raging in the middle east where god is seen as being on the side of whomever is doing the killing today. This is corruption of a dangerous sort, but one that is to be expected of Perry as he attempts to export all of the presumed Texas values to the rest of the nation.

Dont try to get god to endorse your dislike or hatred for someone else by praying for them (and certainly not in public, political meeting; what you pray about at home at night is your business). Pray for yourself, your family and your community and pray that you, too, might have wisdom. Correct your own shortcomings and failings before looking out, long distance, for political enemies to correct with your prayers. Why should god open the eyes of your political enemies before you open your own?

Doug Terry, 9.4.14

CLICK HERE

to go to recent posts, nearly 300 pages of news and comments filed during the first nine months of 2013 and during the critical election year of 2012.

CLICK HERE

to go back to prior years (500+ pages) of The TerryReport

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