Should an openly practicing Muslim be allowed to seek and hold office in America?
What about a Satanist? Should an openly practicing Satanist be allowed to seek and hold office in America?
If not, why not?
If so, should "We the People" be open to voting for them? What about those of us who claim Christ as Lord? Should we be open to voting for the Satanist, too?
While the pilgrims and Puritans of America's early days wouldn't have required more than two nanoseconds (tops) to reject such notions (and follow-up with an obviously much-needed presentation of the Gospel), these sorts of questions are being seriously considered at some length by many – including many professing Christians – in America in the wake of Presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson saying on Sunday that he wouldn't support a Muslim for president, and the answers that most professing Christians in America are coming up with are decidedly…well…not Christian.
The Christian Post, among many others, observed that "he was wrong to say that."
Ted Cruz jumped in there too, citing the Constitution as the gold standard in determining whether open worshipers of false gods should be allowed to seek and secure leadership positions in America. (See: Why do we allow the open practice of Islam, witchcraft, and Satanism in America?)
Then Doug Wilson then chimed in, bringing some much needed sanity to the scene:
As you may have seen, Ben Carson was asked if he could support a Muslim in the presidency. He said, no, absolutely not. Forget about it. He was then asked if he could support a Muslim in Congress. He said that would depend on candidate, positions, etc. Now there are some internal tensions in those answers, but unpacking those is not my purpose today. In the uproar that followed, Ted Cruz observed that the Constitution says that there will be no religious test for holding office, and that he, Ted Cruz, is a constitutionalist. Unlike that Carson guy.
But this is simply to partake in the grand secularist muddle, and to do so magnificently, in high style. It confuses questions that ought to be kept distinct, and it separates things that ought to be kept as parts of an organic whole.
Carson was asked if he could support a Muslim in the presidency. He was not asked if a Muslim should be legally and constitutionally eligible for that office. The questions are entirely distinct. A man could, without contradiction, say no to the first and yes to the second. He could also say no to both, but he would then be applying his anti-Muslim views to two separate questions.
So the question before the house is not whether we should make it constitutionally forbidden for a follower of the prophet Mohamed to become president. The question is whether Ben Carson, given a Muslim running, would support that guy.
While all o' this Carson/Cruz/Potential-Muslim-President stuff is interesting and important on many levels, one thing we should hope and pray that American Christians will come to understand and embrace is that when God explicitly prohibits the open worship of false gods (like Allah, for example, or Satan, for another), He is not playing games. He is not making "a suggestion." He is telling is how it is; He is explaining reality to us as it actually exists everywhere in His creation…which just so happens to include America.
God is explaining to us that in His creation the open worship of false gods is always destructive. It always leads to death. There are no exceptions. Thus, out of love for us, He gives us life-preserving clarity on the matter in His Word.
So when we dich His Word and grab on to the notion of secular "religious pluralism" as a good and noble thing, we are both mocking God and begging for His wrath upon our land and culture.
When we embrace the idea that "We the People" are free to openly worship any god we like and that this is a great virtue that not only serves as a central pillar of our culture, but is also something that all other cultures in the world ought to be encouraged to emulate, we are both mocking God and begging for His wrath upon our land and culture…and the lands and cultures that follow our lead.
When we embrace that explicitly anti-Christian concept of "religious liberty" and hold it high, we are begging for our own destruction. (See: Note to 'Merica: There is no "God-given right" to worship false gods. Repent accordingly.)
Potential Muslim or Satanist or [insert any particular anti-Christ religious category here] candidate-for-President questions are symptomatic. The fact that they are almost always asked in a context that presumes the legality of openly practicing Muslims or Satanists or whatever in America demonstrates that we have a far more profound and far more foundational problem on our hands…and we don't even know it.
The question that we should be asking – but are discouraged at every turn from even noticing, much less contemplating – is the question as to the true legality of the open worship of false gods in the first place. As in: What has God said about this? What has God said is legally allowed in His creation where the worship of false gods is concerned? What has He commanded in this regard? And what has He promised will result from rejection of His life-giving Word on the subject?
Put another way, will we now seek, repent, and submit to the crystal clear Word of God on this vital question?
Or will "We the People" continue to cling to our pride and rebellion, even as our America Idol disintegrates into chaos all around us? (See: Will America repent or will America be destroyed?)
Will we keep symptomatically chattering on and on about the symptoms of the symptoms of the symptoms of our fundamental rejection of the lordship of Christ?
Or will we cut to the chase, take the axe to the root, finally repent and submit to Christ as King in practice?
May God grace us with broken, humble repentance, submission, and the otherwise impossible restoration to follow…while there is yet time.
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"If you love me, you will keep my commandments."
~ Jesus (the real One), in John 14:15