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"An appeaser is one who feeds a crocodile, hoping it will eat him last."
Sir Winston Churchill

2.07.2008

Bill Clinton, Man of God

Yeah, right:

Clinton said the church of his upbringing "was overwhelmingly concerned with personal salvation" but that "its community involvement was largely limited to doing things for poor people around Thanksgiving and Christmas."

He credited hearing a sermon by Martin Luther King, Jr. with making him aware that there was a connection between his religious beliefs and his political ones.

"Everybody believes that they are beautiful or right or good," Clinton said. "We must approach those with which we disagree with an outstretched hand and not a clenched fist."

"Those with which we disagree" turned out to be conservative Southern Baptists.

Clinton characterized the Southern Baptists as "theological absolutists" and contrasted them with the "progressive Baptists" he saw before him. According to Clinton, progressives "put love above everything else because we see through a glass darkly and know in part."

He urged the audience not to lapse into self-congratulation but to pursue reconciliation with their opponents. To do this, they should "find things we can do together. And we have to treat them with respect and honor and believe that they think they are right just as strongly as we do."

And sometimes, those absolutists might actually be in the right. Clinton allowed that "many people who think they are theological conservatives are doing more for the poor, care more about Africa, care about climate change and I applaud it."

He also praised the SBC for apologizing "for slavery and for its segregation and discrimination."

With praise like that, who needs insults?

The former president spoke a great deal about loving and forgiving people, but very little about sin, specifically his own past history of marital infidelity. It was a telling lapse, given the venue and the topic.

As one listener remarked, "With this audience, he might as well have mentioned it and gotten it out of the way. It's what everyone's thinking about."


And let's not forget Bill Clinton's 11th Commandment:

"Thou shalt not have sex with that woman, Monica Lew----judge not lest ye be judged!"

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