In President Obama's nobel acceptance speech, he made reference again to Islam as "a GREAT religion" (Caps, my emphasis, though it reflects the tone in which the statement was made).
While I recognize both the political and practical benefits of using such a term (i.e., seeking to drive a wedge to separate the greater Muslim community from those presently and publicly endorsing jihad.... so as to avoid WWIII), at the same time I wonder if any News organization would consider counting and reporting the number of times the President of the United States has made reference to Islam as a Great Religion and the number of times he has publicly referred to Christianity as a Great Religion? I guarantee the difference would be ASTOUNDING!
Question: Where's the CONSISTENCY when it comes to what many refer to today as "separation of church and state"? Seems while there may be "separation of Christianity and state", there is no "separation of Islam and state". Where is Barry W. Lynn, the Executive Director of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, on this? While outcry would be heard if anyone in a rural classroom even mentions anything related to Christianity, the President of the United States can speak and be broadcast to the world stating "Islam is a GREAT Religion", and no one says a word.
1. While I don't believe our forefathers meant what most people say "separation of church and state" means today, at the same time the inconsistency in applying the principle (as commonly accepted) is gross.
2. While calling Islam a "great religion" may presently have political and practical implications, the consequences of such a high profile figure repeatedly making such references may have great and devastating consequences in the future.
3. Distinction between present expouses of jihad and the greater Muslim community can be made without referring to Islam as being "great". (Note: the reference "great" can not only be taken to mean Islam has made contributions to the world but also to mean Islam is worthy as a religion and not only worthy of endorsement (if not acceptance) but is publicly being endorsed with grand appraisal by the high profile person making the statement.)
4. If we do not need government competing against our business in the marketplace, we certainly don't need government competing against our religion in the world.
5. I'm grateful that while the President(s) of the U.S. may refer to Islam as a great religion, the greater witness found in Jesus and heaven itself not only has spoken with a powerful Word to the contrary but will also win the battle since the certainty of victory lies not in human persuasion (even those with high profiles) but in the sovereignty, power, and faithfulness of God himself.