There is something sinister about Iowa Governor Terry Branstad’s “July 14th Revival” for frustrated secular Americans. Yesterday’s event was not something I participated in, nor did I even know about until it was reported later. Why “sinister”? Well, if you examine the core of this event closer, you’ll see that this is a hate rally.
The biblical passage Branstad based that date on is from the story of Solomon in which his people learn to hate sin more. Droughts? Sinners. Plauges? Sinners. Locusts… yeah, sinners (Oh, did I mention that Branstad is Roman Catholic?).
II Corninthians 7:14 has a few different translations, but the context wasn’t changed in any of them. Sure, there are 19 different versions of this passage depending on which Bible you prefer… but I’ll just go from the ISV, which reads, “when my people humble themselves—the ones who are called by my name—and pray, seek me, and turn away from their evil practices, I myself will listen from heaven, I will pardon their sins, and I will restore their land.”
Got that? If you take this passage out of context, it seems to imply that by denouncing evil… God turns into Santa Claus raining gifts down upon the masses for their virtue. These are the passages that are abused so very often to justify the hatred of Christians. This old testament story of Solomon is one of those connections that modern Christians use to justify that hating the sin is so important to faith that the love for the sinner should manifest itself in judgmental hatred in what they perceive in others. Because if they don’t… then God turns his back on the world causing drastic weather problems and plagues.
First, it bothers me that this seems to imply prayer will fix climate disasters. It is a head-buried-in-sand approach to science which takes away responsibility from humanity. If you ask a Christian a hypothetical question about stabbing someone and then praying to God to “un-stab” that person… they would surely tell you that is a vain and futile prayer. Their was a human choice which resulted in consequential actions… but that concept is too large for most Christians to imprint upon our own recent weather issues. We proverbially stabbed our ecosystem and now Governor Branstad is encouraging us to try to get God to un-stab it for us. Sitting around wishing something hadn’t happened is so much easier than applying bandages to keep the injured from bleeding out and dying.
Secondly, why focus on 7:14? This out-of-context passage gives a problem and a solution to that problem. The core message behind this particular passage is around “hating the sin”. This is one of those many passages which fundamentalists turn to in order to justify hating other people’s lifestyles in the name of loving the sinner.
Why would a Christian need to hate other people’s lifestyles which don’t affect them? Because, in 7:13, directly before this solution to a problem, we see what that problem is. This rally from the elected official is technically… a hate rally.
The threat of not hating the sin in others means God will allow droughts, locusts, and plagues to wipe out everyone. An event like this one isn’t meant to convert new followers, and therefore it is tailored to people who already identify their own paths as going down a correct and righteous path. So which sins are going to be creating the insanely changing weather patterns over the last few decades? Everyone who is not in that group of morally righteous assholes.
Branstad’s blind ideology is a contributing reason that we let our country bleed out while hoping things will get better by burying our heads in the sand. We need this out of politics. He prefers the words of glorified leaders like George Washington (the most wealthy president in the history of the US) and Abraham Lincoln while making laws instead of heeding the Constitution and the words of the Founding Fathers who wrote the doctrines of our law and government.
Please stop voting for this guy. He’s not a priest. He’s barely a politician. He does not understand enough of either of those two jobs to be an expert in either. Stop. Voting. For. Idiots.
Sure, I might seem like I am coming off harshly about Branstad’s ability to fulfill the duties as governor of the state of Iowa… but the things is, who can prove anything about government goings-on in Iowa? Branstad has been bribing the living shit out of his former staff with confidentiality agreements. While publicly, he talks about biblical principles, he hides behind the veil of his office while trying to erect a steel curtain between himself and the public.
Oh, and his pining for more God in government made him a LOT of cash too. Can’t forget the $4 million he raked in to continue hiding in his job, now can we.