Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Liberal Media Does Not Know the Facts of Obama’s Faith

The liberal media is reporting the results of a public opinion survey that reveals a significant number of Americans believe that Barak Obama is a Muslim. The media declares this opinion, which it finds disturbing, to be “incorrect,” even though it often does not correct the false opinions or factual errors stated by others, and even perpetuates many itself.

The media’s responsibility is to inform the public with facts. Instead, it has been focused on taking the opportunity to discredit Obama’s political opponents by refuting the more easily disprovable false allegations some of them have made, while the media has also revealed its liberal bias by attempting to debunk the theory that the President of the United States it supports is a Muslim by sometimes citing unconvincing evidence as fact.

The media has presented with certainty as fact that which is unknowable. Although the media should refute some of the factual errors that have been claimed about Obama’s faith and report his statements or practices that suggest he is a Christian, it is only for God to judge whether or not he truly is a Christian or a Muslim, as only He knows a person’s sincere beliefs. It is not for the media or for any man to judge the faith of another. In short, another person’s religion is not a provable fact. One can, at best, only form an opinion about another’s religion based upon the perception of that individual’s statements and actions.

The media’s citation of evidence of Obama’s Christianity sometimes demonstrates its ignorance of Islam. For example, the media and Obama’s supporters cite Obama’s reading of the Bible and his swearing into office upon it to prove his Christianity. Although his inauguration on the Bible disproves the false allegation that he was sworn in on a Koran, the Islamic scripture, one’s belief in the Bible does not necessarily prove one’s Christianity, as Muslims also believe in the Bible. Therefore, this piece of evidence fails to prove Obama’s Christianity.

As I noted in my June post, The Clintonian Cynicism and Deceptions of Obama and His Supporters, Obama made a statement during the presidential campaign when he was asked about his religion that did not adequately answer the question, declaring that he “prays to Jesus,” which implied that he might be a Christian, but which did not necessarily disprove that he was a Muslim. Prayer is not the equivalent of worship, and Muslims believe in Jesus – as a Prophet. One can sometimes read into the deceptively-worded statements of politicians like Obama what one wants. His answer allowed Christians to think he is a Christian, while allowing Muslims to cling to the hope that he might secretly be a Muslim concealing his faith in Islam in order to advance Islam or the interests of Muslims more effectively. Indeed, Muslims justify even lying if it is intended to advance Islam, which makes even most definitive statements of faith suspect. Obama’s stated purpose as a matter of foreign policy is to make Muslims believe that he understands them, which might explain his reluctance to confess definitely his Christian faith, so as not to alienate them. Another plausible explanation for Obama’s ambiguity about his faith could be his understandable fear of being accused of apostasy – a crime in Islam punishable by death – for renouncing the faith of his father, which, under Muslim law, makes him a Muslim, too.

Contrary to the assertion sometimes made in the media and by Obama’s supporters, Obama has apparently not necessarily declared himself definitively to be a Christian (i.e. that he recognizes Jesus Christ as the Divine Son of God), although he was “baptized” and has made a number of statements that suggest that he might recognize Christ as more than a Prophet. For example, he has stated that he recognizes Christ as his Redeemer. However, there are non-Christians who recognize Christ as the Redeemer who do not recognize Him as Divine. It is possible that Obama is uncomfortable expressing his Christian faith publicly, but his lack of clarity creates the public perception that he is either unsure of his faith or is concealing his true beliefs.

Regardless, Obama’s declarations of himself as a Christian do not necessarily make his Christianity a fact, nor do anyone’s self-declarations. I am not accusing him of being a hypocrite or a Muslim. I am discussing this matter not in an effort to judge Obama’s faith, but to demonstrate that the media knows nothing about it for certain. Based upon some of his statements and practices, I presume Obama is a Christian, or at least a follower of Christ and not of Islam, but neither I nor anyone else – not even the self-described “authoritative” media – can know with certainty what his religious beliefs are for a fact. The media has no authority to judge Obama’s faith or to label anyone else’s opinions about it “correct” or “incorrect.”

Given Obama’s mysterious background, including his own admission of his understanding of Islam based upon his childhood in Muslim Indonesia, his affiliation with a black radical church he has since disavowed, and his ambiguity about his true faith, it is understandable that a growing plurality of Americans are unsure of Obama’s faith and that a growing majority of the rest have developed a perception of him as a Muslim. If the media truly wants to settle the question of Obama’s faith in terms of public perception, then I call upon it to ask Obama to declare definitively whether or not he believes Muhammad is a true Prophet – the one belief about which no Muslim could lie – and whether or not he believes Jesus Christ is Divine.

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