Liberated Theology?

Obama & Wright
Obama & Wright

For some, the connection between Obama and Jeremiah Wright is old news. But I want to be sure we understand just how Obama views the Christian faith. Rick Warren, at the Saddleback Forum last Saturday, just assumed Obama was a Christian. Why? Because Obama says he is.

However, the brand of Christianity Obama believes comes from Wright’s version of what is known as liberation theology. What does that theology teach?

First: God cannot be understood through doctrine and He is not perfect or unchanging.

Second: Jesus is not God, but shows us the way to God; He reveals the way one becomes the son of God.

Third: Salvation is a process of liberation from oppression and injustice. Essentially, this is a Marxist, now-centered approach that puts all emphasis on the here and now, not eternity.

In an interview with a Chicago Sun-Times columnist in 2004, Obama stated, “I’m rooted in the Christian tradition. I believe that there are many paths to the same place, and that is a belief that there is a higher power, a belief that we are connected as a people.”

He continued, “The difficult thing about any religion, including Christianity, is that at some level there is a call to evangelize and proselytize. There’s the belief, certainly in some quarters, that if people haven’t embraced Jesus Christ as their personal savior, they’re going to hell.”

The columnist then added, “Obama doesn’t believe he, or anyone else, will go to hell. But he’s not sure he’ll be going to heaven either.”

So, to summarize: he does not consider Jesus Christ to be the only way to God; he is uncomfortable with the idea that one should win people to the faith; he denies that one must embrace Christ as personal savior or spend an eternity separated from God; in fact, he doesn’t really believe there is an eternal consequence for living apart from God–no one is going to a place called hell. Why is he not sure he is going to a place called heaven? Probably because liberation theology doesn’t really believe that place exists either.

So what does all this mean? Obama is certainly free to believe what he wishes, but I don’t want anyone to be fooled by his expressions of faith. He does have a faith–everyone has a faith of some type. His faith, though, should not be confused with Christianity.

How will his faith influence our culture? It will lead to a more Marxist approach to life: the here-and-now is everything; the government is the solution for all problems; the poor are oppressed by the elites of society; envy of the rich will dominate public policy.

Christians are to influence culture and public policy, but a Biblically based worldview leads in an opposite direction than Obama’s. Let’s not be confused on that point.