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God-O-Meter

Last night, Mike Huckabee opened his ebullient Super Tuesday speech in Little Rock with this line:

Tonight, we are making sure America understands that sometimes one small smooth stone is even more effective than a whole lot of armor.

The crowd went wild. But, as the Bible Belt Blogger wrote recently, most reporters were probably scratching their heads as to the line’s meaning. He offers a good primer:

It’s lifted directly from 1 Samuel 17. That’s the chapter, you’ll recall, where David beats Goliath [Goliath, loosely translated, means Willard Milton ‘Mitt’ Romney or John McCain, depending on which Huckabee supporter you talk to…]As David prepares to battle the Philistine, King Saul offers David his own royal armor, but David rejects it. Instead he takes his slingshot and rounds up stones. Five stones. Five smooth stones. And then, with the help of God, he slays the giant.Covering Gov. Huckabee on the campaign trail, I see subtle biblical allusions over and over again. The audiences get it. The homeschool kids in Tampa and St. John’s, Michigan, they understand Huckabee’s poetry better than the Boys on the Bus.And this isn’t new to Huckabee by the way. Martin Luther King did it in his I Have a Dream speech and his Mountain Top address. So did Lincoln. Of course when Lincoln did it, we were a biblically literate nation. People heard the words, read the words, and knew their source. Not so today.The Bible, the most influential book in world history, has largely been rejected by the Ivy League elites. As a result, a typical sixth grade Sunday School student at North Little Rock Assembly of God probably knows more about this cornerstone of Western civilization than a senior at Cornell or Columbia.

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