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There was a lot of talk over the weekend about former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney's Mormon religion.
This past weekend brought us the Value Voters Summit in D.C. The gathering is organized and run by mostly far right, conservative evangelical Christian leaders. The Summit's straw vote went to Ron Paul....but the hubbub from the weekend was the bold statement by "Megachurch pastor and Rick Perry supporter Robert Jeffress."
..he (Jeffress) said Mitt Romney was not a real Christian. He added that if Republicans vote for him they are giving credibility to a cult and declared that evangelicals should not support a Mormon.
“I think Mitt Romney is a good, moral man,” Jeffress said in an interview with CNN. “But I think those of us who are born-again followers of Christ should always prefer a competent Christian to a competent non-Christian like Mitt Romney.”
If you recall, I have already explained that evangelical Christians are going to have a very difficult time voting for Mitt Romney for president because of his Mormonism. In the 2008 presidential election, evangelical Christians made up 23% of the total voting electorate and 44% of GOP voters.
Almost half of GOP voters in 2008 were evangelical Christians. As Pastor Jeffress made clear this weekend, evangelicals are being urged to not vote for Mitt Romney because Mormonism is a cult and Mormon members are "non-Christians." Therein lies the problem for Mitt Romney as he pursues the presidency.
According to evangelical Christians, Mormonism is a "cult." Sounds ominous.
But, what is a cult?
a particular system of religious worship, especially with reference to its rites and ceremonies.
This may come as a surprise to some, but Christianity, itself, is a cult.....and is referred to as such by biblical and theological scholars. Christianity, especially as expressed before the Reformation and continued through the worldwide Roman Catholic Church afterwards, has a "particular system of religious worship" with it's own "rites and ceremonies." The Mass...the administering of the "sacraments" through the special priesthood, the statues, the vestments, the incense, the bellringing, the sharing of the "Host".....make up a "particular system of religious worship" with it's own unique "rites and ceremonies."
And indeed, many evangelical Christians (example:Rev.John Hagee) consider Roman Catholicism to be a "cult" of non-Christians.....but in a slightly different way than Mormonism is regarded as a "cult." When you get into the world of invisible god-beings...it really gets complicated.
To Pastor Jeffress, who addressed the Value Voters Summit crowd.....Mitt Romney may be "competent", but alas, he is a non-Christian because he is a member of the Mormon cult. And although Mitt Romney is a "good, moral person", according to Jeffress.....he isn't a "born-again follower of the Lord Jesus Christ."
Because Romney is a non-Christian member of what evangelical born-agains consider a cult group....and not a true "born-again follower of the Lord Jesus Christ"....evangelical voters at the Value Voters Summit were encouraged by Pastor Jeffress to vote for a true born-again Christian candidate, Governor Rick Perry....and not Mitt Romney, the Mormon cultist. Ron Paul won the straw poll vote. Go figure.
So, what do we have here?
Pastor Jeffress and Mitt Romney both claim to believe deeply in invisible god-beings. Despite the man-written Book of Mormon and the man-written Bible.....no one in human history has ever seen, heard from, or spoken to any invisible god-beings. Pastor Jeffress and like-minded evangelical Christians have never seen, heard from, or spoken to "the Lord Jesus Christ"....and neither has Mitt Romney.
Yet, the sanctimonious Pastor Jeffress has the audacity to claim that the invisible god-being whom Mitt Romney believes in...is not really the authentic and genuine invisible god-being whom he and fellow "born agains" believe in....and because of THAT.....fellow "born again" voters, who also pledge their faith and loyalty to invisible god-beings...plural in the invisible Trinity, but singular in the One invisible god....should not vote for the non-Christian, Mitt Romney.
Those evangelical Christians have "values" to uphold, you understand.
Our Constitution prohibits any religious test to qualify for elected office.....but to evangelical Value Voters....a religious test for the U.S. presidency is essential. The reason? Because the invisible god-being(s) whom evangelicals believe in are far superior to the invisible god-beings Mormons believe in.
It's a good thing that modern America has moved so far away from the days of our superstitious Puritan roots, isn't it?