'Beware of false prophets'

Even though I was born and reared in the South, I lived and worked in Pittsburgh for several years. During that time, I had the misfortune to be represented in Congress by Rick Santorum.

The keystone of Mr. Santorum’s campaign for office and the policies he supported in Congress was his unyielding commitment to anti-abortion causes and his opposition to any family-planning advocacy. He was such an unsatisfactory representative that even the strongly Catholic electorate in Pittsburgh, where anti-abortion sentiment is very strong, voted him out of office.

His absurd attack on President Obama’s faith is either an expression of ignorance of the Constitution, or a willingness to resort to callous lies for political purposes. The expectation that a religious organization or corporation involved in operating a public institution or service should follow the same laws all other corporations is a consequence of the Establishment Clause of the Constitution, which ensures that the government will not establish a state religion or give special preference to any religion. This is the foundation of the religious freedom that we Americans enjoy.

Mr. Obama was defending the Constitution, as required by his oath of office, when his administration ruled that employees rights were protected, even if they worked for institutions sponsored by a church.

Jesus Christ tells us to “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. ”(Matt. 7:15-16) What are these fruits that are characteristics of the Christian faith?

When John the Baptist sent his disciples to ask Jesus if he was the Messiah, Jesus’ response was “Go and tell John what you hear and see: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, and the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised and the poor have good news brought to them.” (Matthew 11:4–5)

Do the policies advocated by the Republican candidates, and Mr. Santourm in particular, conform to the call of the Gospel of Jesus Christ? Or do their policies “sell the innocent for silver and the needy for a pair of sandals” (Amos 2:6)?

Allen Smith

North Augusta, S.C.

More

Mon, 02/20/2017 - 21:58

Columnist is rare asset

Mon, 02/20/2017 - 21:58

Retake the government

Mon, 02/20/2017 - 21:57

See ‘as others see us’