Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Dobson and the Bible

Whatever it is James Dobson thinks he knows about the Bible, you don't need to know.

I don't need to research his books, look for his statement of faith, or listen to his sermons. There's one standard that in this case does not fail: "Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?" (Mt. 7:16). In His Sermon on the Mount Jesus says a bad tree bears bad fruit.

It's just a few verses after that that Jesus -- speaking of somebody -- says, "Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity." He's not saying that about Joe Average-Christian, but about someone with power, authority, and prestige. Someone who's had the glitz and applause and esteem. And yet all they've done brings only this response from Jesus: "I never knew you."

Tom Minnery, a senior vice president at Focus on the Family, said: "Without question, Dr. Dobson is speaking for millions of evangelicals because his understanding of the Bible is thoroughly evangelical." Somehow I doubt that millions of evangelicals are paying that close of attention to "every word that proceedeth out of" Dobson's mouth, since in evangelical circles you're taught to read the Bible for yourself and come to your own understanding of its teachings. Bible teachers are respected until they give you a good reason to look elsewhere. It sounds very presumptuous for Dobson to claim to speak for them.

Jesus' own standard is the standard of truth, doing things His way. James Dobson has shown by his many forays into rightwing, destructive politics that he is not guided by any standard of truth at all, but by partisan expediency, with nothing that reflects Christ. For instance, there's nothing godly about George W. Bush -- a man responsible for untold death and misery around the world. Yet Dobson trumpets his support for Bush.

There's nothing godly about the Republican party -- they're morally bankrupt and don't even pose well. Their stock in trade also is world misery for their own selfish gain. The idea of Jesus seeing any good fruit in that is far-fetched to say the least. Their ethic is grab, loot, lie, kill, and lie some more. They have produced both warmongers and war criminals. And yet the Republican party is Dobson's default choice -- poor choice.

James Dobson thinks people should care what he has to say about the Bible.

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