I have heard a variety of adjectives used by his detractors to describe President Obama from naive to ignorant to evil. He claims to be a Christian, yet many are convinced–bolstered by some of his own words–that he is indeed the first Muslim President of the United States. I don’t know that he is truly a Muslim, but when you look at how he attempts to use the Bible to justify homosexual marriage and abortion, one thing is clear: he is not a born-again believer in Jesus Christ. It is one thing for born-again believers to be wrong on some theological issues; we are all wrong on some things. It is another for a professing believer to justify thingsthe Bible clearly calls sin as something good and “approved” by God, such as homosexuality and abortion.
But back to the Muslim issue. Words are important. The words we use speak volumes to our deep beliefs. And the words this President uses when he discusses terrorism spreading throughout the Middle East and the world at the hands of radical Muslims is chilling.
First, did you ever notice that while most people refer to these radicals as “ISIS”, the President most often uses the term “ISIL”? This is a significant difference to address.
ISIS: The militant group, which began as the Iraqi branch of AL Qaeda during the U.S. occupation, gained this name after it invaded Syria in 2013. ISIS is short for “Islamic State in Iraq and Syria,” or “Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham,” which is an old Arabic term for the area.
ISIL: ISIL translates to “Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.” The Levant is a geographical term that refers to the eastern shore of the Mediterranean — Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, Israel and Jordan.
Notice that rarely, if ever, will you here Obama say that his goal is to “destroy ISIL”. He most often uses the word “contain” as he has done frequently over the past few weeks. So instead of “We will destroy this evil” it is “We will ‘contain’ ISIL. Contain them to what exactly? Could it be that given this President’s obvious disdain for Israel that his idea of “contain” is to allow ISIL to reclaim the “Levant”, eventually conquering Israel?
We had better open our eyes and start listening and looking beyond the rhetoric. Israel, more and more each day, stands alone sadly abandoned by it’s most powerful ally, the United States. Words have meaning and consequences.
Time for Christians to start listening carefully and demanding explanations for the careless and sloppy use of words, particularly from our political leaders and even from those who claim the mantle of pastor or teacher. The next time we hear a Christian pastor or teacher use the word “gospel”, consider asking them if they can define exactly what they mean by the gospel?
President Obama, in my opinion, is leading this nation to the brink of chaos and disaster. This is not unexpected when we understand the prophetic scriptures of the Bible. Let’s make sure those we elevate as Bible teachers do not do the same to the professing Church. Let’s respectfully insist that leaders define the words they use. In regards to the Church, this means words like “gospel”, “sin”, and “grace”.
Words have meanings–sometimes they mean different things to different people. With eternal lives at stake, we must seek and demand clarity for the words spoken from the mouths of our leaders. And we as professing believers are ultimately responsible for correctly defining and using the words of the Bible–the everlasting truth of God.