Thursday, March 10, 2011

Huckabee Is a Pastor---That's the Problem

Huckabee and his loyal supporters love to claim that he is the Christian leader, that God would hear his (and by implication, no one else's) prayers, and that would make him a good leader.

Would it really?

At age 21, Huckabee went to work as a staffer in the field of televangelism. We've all seen what a dearth of ethics there are in televangelism. It's a field that makes used car salesman smell good.

Later Huckabee served for many years as a pastor at two Baptist churches. Does America need a Pastor in Chief? Would it be beneficial to society to have a president issuing pardons based on his views of forgiveness and christian conversion? Did it help Arkansas to have a chief executive handing record numbers of pardons and clemmencies because prisoners serendipitously found Jesus while in prison?

Huckabee has stated, "Politics are totally directed by worldview. That's why when people say, 'We ought to separate politics from religion,' I say to separate the two is absolutely impossible".

He has also argued "But I believe it's a lot easier to change the Constitution than it would be to change the word of the living god. And that's what we need to do -- to amend the Constitution so it's in God's standards rather than try to change God's standards so it lines up with some contemporary view."

But whose interpretation of God's will would be used? Certainly couldn't use Muslims, Jews, Hindus, or Seiks, because they don't believe in the right God. Mormons are out, because they really don't worship Christ, no matter what they may claim. Catholics and Episcopalians are disqualified because of their heretical worship of saints. And Unitarians and Jehovah's Witnesses are just nuts. Really, it would have to be Southern Baptists who would write the constitution. No one else could be trusted.

Would America benefit from an all or nothing pro life Pastor who is so exclusionary that he can't welcome those who convert to life late in their lives? Or a Pastor who is justified by his righteous indignation to spend many pages in multiple books, years after a political race, to vent his spleen over percieved slights?

Would it be useful to have a president who loves social entitlements, as long as they represent Christian charity? Even if he has to beg the legislative branch to raise taxes to cover these new entitlements?

How would America be a better place for electing a Pastor in Chief who believes in end of times Rapture and that said Rapture would be ushered in by apocalyptic war in Israel? Do we need to be led by a Pastor who is willing to prop up Mideast dictators like Mubarak because they are friends with Israel?

Here’s the problem: If you spend 20 years in a profession where you can't separate your idea of God's will from the will of the people, chances are you’ll forget what it really is. Mike Huckabee spent two decades of his life being deep fried in Pastoral thinking. He might have been like the healthiest carrot in the beginning, but if you deep fry a carrot for 20 years, there won’t be many vitamins left.


Granny T said...

As I mentioned several times when Huckabee made that comment a few years ago - Baptist believe that God's Word is not to be tampered with according to what it says in the last few verses of the last chapter in the last Book of the Bible:
Revelation 22:18-19 (KJV)
18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:
19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

Our Constitution tells us how to amend it and God tells us not to amend His Word. So, even though Huckabee could have worded what he said better - it goes along with what the majority of Christians believe.

Anonymous said...

Dan, You're just having too much fun with Huck and John this week. It's so easy--like shooting fish in barrel.


Granny T said...

If you spend 20 years in a profession where you can't separate your idea of God's will from the will of the people, chances are you’ll forget what it really is.

Being a former Pastor is part of Huckabee's strong points. He realizes the hardships faced by broken families and realizes that God gave the responsibility of taking care of the family to the parents and the church. He devoted a whole chapter to that topic in his new book, A Simple Government

I'd advise people to read that chapter and then tell me where you disagree with the former pastor. Here's a link that provides the excerpt from the book so you don't even have to buy the book or check it out from the library - Chapter One
The Most Important Form of Government Is a Father, a Mother, and Children

Another reason that I think being a former pastor is a strong point is because like Governors and Presidents they are on call 24/7 - and the people are their bosses. Pastors can be voted out just like politicians. Tell me what other potential candidate comes anywhere close to the chief executive experience dealing with everyday people that has firing rights 24 hours a day - 7 days a week as former pastor/former Governor Huckabee has.

DanL said...

Granny T, I don't think that being a Pastor is a bad thing. I was just turning the tables on John. But I do find many of Huck's views, actions, and character traits that have been shaped by his pastoral background to be troubling. But there could be many other pastors of other Baptist congregations that wouldn't have made the mistakes with pardons/paroles that Huck did, and that could more easily separate their religious views from governing.

Granny T said...

A lot of those pardons were so people could get jobs and get off the welfare rolls. That could be part of the belief that my mother drilled in me that I'm sure Huckabee heard and believed, too - found in 2 Thessalonians 3:10 (KJV) For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.

Many of them were for minor offenses years before and the majority were for people already out of jail or had never even spent any time in jail - like the traffic violation from 1975 for guitarist Keith Richards from the Rolling Stones.

Right Wingnut said...

Granny T, The Keith Richards example is a red herring. Besides, why should Keith Richards be allowed to clear his record? He was swerving (probably drunk or stoned), and pleaded no contest to reckless driving. What is the justification of pardoning him? Would I have the same opportunity? Would you?

Anonymous said...

I have two points to make.

1) About adding to the word of God; see Moses 4:2. Maybe we should have ended the Bible at Deuteronomy! Of course, I am not advocating that.

2) Mitt Romney was a Bishop and a Stake President for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for at least 10 years. These are lay ministry, unpaid positions, but the function of a Bishop is a great deal like a pastor. One of the commissions of a Bishop is to, "seek out the poor and the needy in order to administer to their needs." I have worked as president of the women's organization, the Relief Society. The Relief Society President assists the Bishop in helping the poor and in administering the Church's welfare system. I can assure you that Bishops have the opportunity to become VERY acquainted with the plight of the everyday person, especially the poor. Basically, being a Bishop or Stake President is like taking on a second job, while struggling to be successful at the first one. Please remember that being a Bishop in the CJCLDS is like being a lay pastor--very, very demanding.

I liked Huck and had him on my "I will think about voting for him as President list." I even started doing some research about him. Then came Iowa 2008 and his "Christian leader" shenanigans. I despise him and his thin-skinned vindictiveness and jealousy. His being a Baptist preacher has nothing to do with my dislike for him. In fact, I liked George W. better FOR his religious attitudes. Give me a Baptist preacher who is very unlike Huck, and I will give him serious consideration. Huck only gets my vote if Obama or someone worse is his opponent.


Anonymous said...

Sorry, Deuteronomy 4:2, not Moses 4:2. I was thinking about Moses since this is from the Pentateuch. Moses wrote it. Sorry!


OhioJOE said...

"Granny T, I don't think that being a Pastor is a bad thing. I was just turning the tables on John." If that is the case, fine. However, for the record, I have no problem with a Pastor as President. In fact, I'd rather have a Baptist Minister or a Mormon Bishop (for that matter) than phony Catholic. Neither Mr. Huckabee nor Mr. Romney would infringe upon my religious rights. So any concern I have with either of them is not religiously based.

BOSMAN said...

There is no comparison between Huckabee's stint as a Pastor and Romney's as a Bishop in the LDS.

All one has to do is listen to them and see how they governed their states. With Romney there is also his Bain experience.

Huckabee has a hard time separating church and state. Clemencies and also several videos of his speeches during the 2008 campaign are readily available for those who think he does not have a problem.

OhioJOE said...

"There is no comparison between Huckabee's stint as a Pastor and Romney's as a Bishop in the LDS." Alright, fine, I am still not bothered by the idea of a Pastor as President per se. BTW, the fact that Mr. Huckabee gave clemecy to certain people is a matter of judgement (or lack thereof) rather than a matter of religion.

DanL said...

OJ, I agree that Huck's pardon problems are much more a matter of poor judgment than a pastoral problem. I wrote most of this tongue in cheek to rebut some of the nonsense that John posted about Romney and business.

Jeff Fuller said...

You forgot that Huck dropped out of divinity school to go "understudy" as an Tele-Evangelist. You know that "Theology Degree" that he lied that he had? Yup, dropped out early to go make some "TV money."

And his comments at the SBLC meeting in SLC while he was a sitting Governor that we need to "take this nation back for Christ" was another one that will get played up time and time again if he were ever in a general election contest.

BOSMAN said...

Hi John,

I've written several posts on this and there is NO WAY that Huckabee can be forgiven for ALL THOSE clemency/pardon/commutations. Here are a couple:

Mike Huckabee should apologize for all those Clemencies

Does Mike Huckabee have a Problem separating church and state?