Thursday, November 5, 2009

Steven Anderson - CINO

In any movement, there will be those hardliners who claim that other members of the movement who dissent from the deemed consensus on X, Y or Z issue are not "real" members of the movement.

In Canada, the Reform Party arose, in part, because the Progressive Conservative Party were deemed "not 'real' conservatives."

In my own party, there are always the handful who claim that various of us have no right to be New Democrats due to our assorted thought crimes. (Ironically, they will often accuse me of really belonging in the Liberal Party, while at the same time decrying my alleged lack of principle in refusing to countenance electoral deals with the Liberal Party. A trifle counterintuitive that.)

The right wing of the US Republican Party have even come up with a (half) witty acronym for moderate members of their party: RINOs - Republicans in Name Only.

Thing is, it does occasionally happen that people will claim to be part of some movement or body or structure while at the same time violating its basic beliefs or principles.

So, brothers and sisters, let me introduce you to Pastor Steven Anderson, CINO - Christian in Name Only.

Pastor Anderson has taken to praying for President Obama. Not that God should guide and bless the President, mind. Rather that the President should die.
"I hope that God strikes Barack Obama with brain cancer so he can die like Ted Kennedy and I hope it happens today."

This isn't an example of a well meaning Christian getting it wrong. This isn't a wee bit of confusion about the finer points of Christology or Trinitarian dogma. This isn't honest disagreement about casuistical divinity.

No, brothers and sisters. This is not error. This is grievous sin and overt heresy. This is Satan messing with the Body of Christ.

It is clear and unambiguous. Though he calls himself "pastor," Steven Anderson is leading Jesus's sheep into the tender embrace of the wolves.

If he believes that there is any theological warrant to pray for the death of another person, then the god who Steven Anderson worships is not the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Jesus he proclaims is not the Son of the Living God. The Spirit he invokes is not the comforter who will lead us into all truth.

Now, here's the kicker. If I want to be more than a CINO, I need to pray for Steven Anderson. To pray that he will have his eyes opened, that he will be freed from this error and come to know the true God - Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

That someone who pretends to be in a position of Christian leadership would pray so hateful a prayer is a scandal. He slanders the Name of Jesus.

Of course, he's not the only one out there preaching hate and pretending to do so in the name of the God of Love. We've seen enough examples of that of late - Uganda and Maine spring immediately to mind.

Much as I may feel otherwise, my Christian duty is to pray for them all.

MOST gracious God, we humbly beseech thee for thy Church. Fill it with all truth; in all truth with all peace. Where it is corrupt, purify it; where it is in error, direct it; where any thing is amiss, reform it; where it is right, strengthen and confirm it; where it is in want, furnish it; where it is divided and rent asunder, make it whole again; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

1 comment:

Country Parson said...

Well said. Thanks. Especially for the reminder of the prayer that must be ours.