They say none of us can really judge what’s in another man’s heart — or
know who has attained salvation through a relationship with God and who
Having said that, let me add emphatically and swiftly that Vice
President Al Gore’s celebrated new emphasis on “religious values” is as
phony as a three-dollar bill.
It’s probably just a very good bit of Internet folklore — at least I
haven’t been able to verify the validity of this story. Nevertheless,
the fact that it is so totally believable in the context of what we know
about Al Gore makes it worth repeating — even if it turns out to be
nothing more than a good joke.
It seems Gore was giving a speech somewhere and referred to his favorite
Bible passage as John 16:3. There were a few snickers and sideways
glances in the audience among those who assumed the vice president had
made a slight gaffe in confusing one of the most famous scripture
references for Christians — John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that
he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should
not perish, but have everlasting life.”
As for John 16:3? “And these things will they do unto you, because they
have not known the Father, nor me.”
It just could have happened. I’ll wait to hear the denials from the Gore
campaign and stand ready to publish them if they care to set the record
But that’s not my beef with Gore’s religion-mongering. My problem is not
even that it is transparent politics from a man who has in many ways
betrayed the principal tenets of the Christianity he pretends to
observe. It’s worse than that.
I truly believe Al Gore is the point man in a campaign to set a fatal
trap for America’s churches and Christian charities.
What Gore is saying is that he plans to run a “faith-friendly” campaign.
One of his advisers, Elaine Kamarck, explains that the GOP “should not
have a lock on religious issues … the Democratic Party is going to take
back God this time.”
Well, Ms. Kamarck, I’ve got news for you. Nobody on this mortal plane —
least of all Al Gore and the Democratic Party — is much equipped to
“take back God.” The God I know and serve doesn’t do the bidding of
petty politicians — Republican or Democrat. He may or may not “take
back” some of them. If He does, I can assure you it will be on His
terms, not part of some pathetic humanistic political agenda.
But again, that’s just simple arrogance, the kind we have come to expect
from modern politicians. Where Gore gets dangerous is when he talks
about the role of “faith-based organizations” or, in his bureaucratic
jargon, FBOs. He is talking at campaign stop after campaign stop about
how FBOs could help solve problems in a way that secular government
approaches could not. Of course, he’s right about that. Marvin Olasky
pointed out in “The Tragedy of American Compassion” how the churches
more than adequately addressed the needs of the orphans and widows prior
to the advent of the welfare state.
Yet, trust me, Gore has something else in mind. He’s talking about
building partnerships between the church and the state — using the
churches and the FOBs to help the state redistribute the goodies. More
efficient socialism? Of course. If that’s what you’re looking for,
Gore’s probably your man.
However, if you believe in the Constitution, freedom, individual rights,
personal responsibility and self-government, this is a dangerous
Why is it dangerous? It’s another step toward an official church — not
unlike those you see in China and Cuba and other totalitarian nations.
It’s also a way to co-opt the church, to lure it into acceptance of the
state’s politically correct rules and regulations.
For instance, Gore says he would like to extend public funds to FBOs as
long as they don’t “proselytize.” Do you see why it could be a little
dangerous for the state to impose such restrictions on churches? “Yeah,
you can help us with our important work,” says the state, “but don’t mix
up helping people and evangelism.”
Of course, the very thing that makes the churches so effective at
helping widows, orphans and the less-fortunate is the zeal with which
they do their work and the very real answers they provide for people. It
makes a difference in people’s lives.
Why is Gore the point man in a 21st century plan to hijack what’s left
of the most important and vital cultural institution in the world?
Figure it out.
Let me give you another Bible reference to ponder. And, Al, make sure
you get this right. It’s 2 Corinthians 11:14:
“And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of