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President Obama's Overture To Islam

President Obama gave a major speech on June 4, 2009, at the University of Cairo. It is deeply revealing of his worldview – it is not surprising, but it is confirmatory.

 
This was his introduction, which makes it plain that his platform is not Biblical truth, but diplomatic political correctness:
 
 “I’ve come here to Cairo to seek a new beginning between the United States and Muslims around the world, one based on mutual interest and mutual respect, and one based upon the truth that America and Islam are not exclusive and need not be in competition. Instead, they overlap, and share common principles — principles of justice and progress; tolerance and the dignity of all human beings.”
 
“Principles of justice”, may be a common principle, but interpretation matters. Whilst Islamic / US law has some apparent foundational similarities, the Sharia focus looks to a Christian more like a focus on Old Testament law and less like a legal system that has evolved a grace-based understanding of the value and rights of the individual.
 
“Tolerance”, is a traditional Islamic virtue. This may be surprising to many, but it is true. Unfortunately, as the Islamic state has increasingly taken control of religion and religious institutions, Islamic Puritanism has become a political and economic weapon… and tolerance becomes increasingly politically incorrect.
 
The following passage occurs later in the speech:
 
"So let there be no doubt: Islam is a part of America. And I believe that America holds within her the truth that regardless of race, religion, or station in life, all of us share common aspirations — to live in peace and security; to get an education and to work with dignity; to love our families, our communities, and our God. These things we share. This is the hope of all humanity."
 
Islam cannot be a part of the America I know. A Muslim way of life can and should be tolerated in America, but Islam cannot be part of a nation that is “under God”. Note also the sleight of hand that assumes we share “our God”. There is only one God. And He is not the God of the Koran.
 
In its 6000 or so words, the speech touches on many critical issues. One that I noted spoke of the relative rights of Israel and Palestine:
 
"At the same time, Israelis must acknowledge that just as Israel’s right to exist cannot be denied, neither can Palestine’s. The United States does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements. (Applause.) This construction violates previous agreements and undermines efforts to achieve peace. It is time for these settlements to stop. (Applause.)"
 
There can be no doubt that the plight of the Palestinians is tragic. It dates back, as the President notes elsewhere in his speech, to misguided meddling as power shifted from the great 19th century imperial powers. The Biblical position is quite clear. God gave land to the Israelites which they have yet fully to claim. The Palestinians need to be accommodated elsewhere, and there will be no peace until they are. As Christians, we must know that we will be blessed or cursed as we bless or curse Israel (Genesis 12:3). President Obama is prepared to be part of a misguided diplomatic tradition that seeks to undermine the Abrahamic covenant.
 
Let me touch on one final point. President Obama, in his desire to be sensitive to his audience, gave equal weight to the Koran, the Talmud, and the Holy Bible. As he came to the end of his speech, he included what follows:
 
"The Holy Koran tells us: “O mankind! We have created you male and a female; and we have made you into nations and tribes so that you may know one another.”
The Talmud tells us: “The whole of the Torah is for the purpose of promoting peace.”
The Holy Bible tells us: “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.” (Applause.)
The people of the world can live together in peace. We know that is God’s vision. Now that must be our work here on Earth."

 
Once again, the President displays a worldview that appears to be pluralistic, and theistic – but not Christian. Not all books are equal. Not all “Gods” are God. And, like it or not, as Christians we are commissioned to make disciples of all the world. Only by staying on mission can we truly be peacemakers.
 
I have commented a couple of times that the speech ran to 6000 or so words and touched on many issues. You may care to read it for yourself, to deepen your insight into President Obama’s political, moral and religious compass. You can find it at:
WWW.whitehouse.gov/the_press_office/Remarks-by-the-President-at-Cairo-University-6-04-09/
 
Ian Rowlands 
 
[Ian and Myra Rowlands are part of a Christian Ministry - FamilyLife® -- dedicated to helping husbands and wives live marriages according to God’s plan. They are raising their support so they can report to their assignment, and we invite you to take a look at their website (www.therowland.cccministry.org) to see if their family-centered focus in One Nation Under God is one you feel you can help with. Ian is a regular contributor to One Nation Under God U.S.A.'s website (www.onug.us), covering the interaction between faith, family and freedom.] Ask Ian and Myra about Family Life's "Weekend" To Remember" Marriage Conferences!
 

 

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