“But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou
shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father
seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.”
– Matthew 6:6 (KJV)
I wish more Christians would heed these words from Jesus in the
Gospel of Matthew.
Instead, too often, we’re treated to public prayer spectacles like
last week’s National Prayer Breakfast in Washington and the latest
pseudo-spiritual, Elmer Gantry-style sideshow from President Clinton.
Now, I know lots of sincere believers participate in these events.
But frankly, I think they are being hoodwinked, defrauded, deceived.
For instance, Clinton told participants “there is absolutely no
politics in this.” Nonsense. Many of those who attend such events do it
precisely because it’s a smart political move — Clinton included. In
fact, he doesn’t do anything in public that isn’t politically motivated.
Remember, this is the guy who on Easter Sunday morning waved his
Bible to onlookers after leaving church, then headed over to the Oval
Office to celebrate privately with Monica Lewinsky. This is the guy who
attempted to use scripture to justify his infidelity and adulterous
behavior. This is the guy who has done more to tear down the vestiges of
public morality in America than anyone since Alfred Kinsey (or, at
least, Hugh Hefner) and has yet to express any true repentance.
Clinton’s theme at the event was making peace with your enemies.
Again, this from the man who vowed after his re-election victory in 1996
to pursue his adversaries and “cut them out” of the body politick “like
Quickly, Clinton used this morning of prayer to launch into one of
his patented political campaign stump speeches in which he takes credit
for any good thing — real or imagined — that may have occurred during
“Throughout this year, our allies and we have worked to deepen the
peace in Bosnia — and we’re delighted to have the leader of the
Republica Srbska here today — and we’re working today to avoid a new
catastrophe in Kosovo, with some hopeful signs.
“We also have worked to guarantee religious freedom for those who
disagree with all of us in this room, recognizing that so much of the
trouble in the world is rooted in what we believe are the instructions
we get from God to do things to people who are different from us. And we
think the only answer is to promote religious freedom at home and around
I might add at this point that on the very same day Clinton was
preaching religious tolerance, his FBI director was condemning future
violence from “religious/apocalyptic groups or individuals” hell-bent on
fulfilling millennial prophecies. The answer to that, the Clinton
administration claims, is not more freedom — but more government
surveillance, infiltration and force.
Clinton continued with the politicking and self-congratulations: “I
want to thank all of you who helped us to pass the Religious Freedom Act
Then he went totally off the deep end — as you can always count on
Clinton to do in any speech.
“I do believe that even though Adolf Hitler preached a perverted form
of Christianity, God did not want him to prevail,” he said.
Clinton’s allies on the left have been canonizing the lie that Hitler
was some kind of perverted “right-wing” Christian — and getting away
with it — for too long. Hitler, a fascist, believed first and foremost
in state power — which put him firmly and securely in the camp of
leftist ideology, perhaps a few degrees to the right of totalitarian
Communists. He was, as William Donohue, president of the Catholic
League, said, “a neo-pagan terrorist whose conscience was not informed
by Christianity, but by pseudo-scientific racist philosophies.”
In closing, Clinton said: “I do not know how to put this into words.
A friend of mine last week sent me a little story out of Mother Teresa’s
when she said she was asked, when you pray, what do you say to God.
And she said, ‘I don’t say anything — I listen.’”
That’s advice that Bill Clinton, who has something to say about
everything in every situation, shouldn’t be offering others, but heeding
Shut up, Bill, and listen. Maybe it’s not too late even for you to
hear that still small voice.