Beliefnet
Lynn v. Sekulow

I’m sure we’ll debate evolution and intelligent design a great deal more as this blog continues.  I met a guy over in the “Emerald Isle” who posed a question more theological than legal, but I told him I’d blog in search of answers.

I see that many of the right of center blogs are still apoplectic about former DNC chair Don Fowler’s overheard conversation which included the line in response to the arrival of Hurricane Gustav: “That just demonstrates that God is on our side.”  This neatly layers with filmmaker Michael Moore’s earlier comment: “I was just thinking that this Gustav is proof that there is a God in Heaven…that it would actually be on the way to New Orleans on Day One of the Republican Convention…”.
This is not exactly high-grade comedy; many would find it at least as foolish as Pat Robertson “praying away” a hurricane from Virginia Beach (which later hit parts of New York state) or Jerry Falwell’s claim that the existence of feminists and the ACLU caused God to lift a curtain of protection from the US on September 11. (Ann Coulter said that Senator Edward Kennedy and yours truly were to blame.)  But there actually is a difference.  See, Fowler and Moore have never demonstrated any belief that God tracks hurricanes or uses them to “prove” anything.  But Pat, the late Dr. Falwell and Ann do believe these interventions are true; they even often have some Biblical injunctions to try to prove it.
But this Irish fellow made another observation.  Wasn’t George Bush the fellow who told a couple of his cabinet members that he believed he was chosen by God to lead at this time in history.  Indeed, Bush did.  Now, wait, if God picked George Bush, then God must have been responsible for the Bush Administration’s failures with Katrina.  Right?  God picked “hell of a job, Brownie” and made sure that Michael Chertoff was flying off to a bird flu conference instead of flying to a drowning New Orleans.  This doesn’t seem right.  But now, did God send Gustav close to New Orleans to disrupt the Republicans in St. Paul?  But did God send Gustav only close, so that George Bush could go to Texas and tape the kind of stuff he should have said pre-Katrina?  Did God think that this would ultimately help the Republican ticket which could spend the first day of the convention asking for hurricane aid funds instead of McCain contributions?
Why do Irish people ask this kind of stuff?  And, let’s put everything on the table.  Didn’t Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi tell us weeks ago that God had picked Obama to lead us at this time? What role did Gustav play in his campaign?
Christians like myself are not Biblical literalists–you’ve probably figured that out already.  I also have a reluctance to seriously believe that God manipulates elections (although bad election machines might) and is therefore responsible for all the misdeeds, mistakes, or miscalculations successful politicians make. Maybe this is just one more reason pols should go easy on the God talk. 
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