Last Thursday Barack Obama gave a speech at the National Prayer Breakfast. The National Prayer Breakfast is an opportunity for politicians of both parties to attempt to win favor with religious voters. Sometimes speeches by politicians at religious events like this can reveal their ignorance of history. For example, at the Religious Broadcasters Convention Ronald Reagan told the televangelists that Thomas Paine and Thomas Jefferson would be proud of the work the charlatans were doing! It's obvious that Reagan was ignorant of the fact that Paine and Jefferson were not Christians, but both of them were Deists.
On Thursday, Obama, after letting the crowd know that he had found Jesus many years ago, showed his ignorance of the famous Christian apologist C.S. Lewis. One of Lewis' books which he is most famous for is Mere Christianity. The Christian monthly Christianity Today voted this book as the third most influential book in the shaping of the minds of Christian evangelicals. Obama said, "In the words of C.S. Lewis, 'Christianity has not, and does not profess to have a detailed political program. It is meant for all men at all times, and the particular program which suited one place or time would not suit another.'"
Like the Bible Lewis promoted, Lewis seems to suffer from ambiguity (the Bible isn't even clear on how to save your eternal soul, the biggest selling point of Christianity). After writing the above, he writes about what a Christian society would be like. He writes, "the New Testament, without going into details, gives us a pretty clear hint of what a fully Christian society would be like. Perhaps it gives us more than we can take. It tells us that there are to be no passengers or parasites: if man does not work, he ought not to eat. Every one is to work with his own hands, and what is more, every one's work is to produce something good: there will be no manufacture of silly luxuries and then of sillier advertisements to persuade us to buy them. And there is to be no 'swank' or 'side,' no putting on airs. To that extent a Christian society would be what we now call Leftist. On the other hand, it is always insisting on obedience -- obedience (and outward marks of respect) from all of us to properly appointed magistrates, from children to parents, and (I am afraid this is going to be very unpopular) from wives to husbands. Thirdly, it is to be a cheerful society: full of singing and rejoicing, and regarding worry or anxiety as wrong. Courtesy is one of the Christian virtues; and the New Testament hates what it calls 'busybodies.'"
As I wrote in my book, An Answer to C.S. Lewis' Mere Christianity (for the Kindle version click here) , what Lewis is describing is nothing but a cult. It reminds me of the Stepford Wives where the women are all obedient to their husbands and society is loaded with phoney smiles and disingenuous politeness.
Acts 4:34-5:11 makes this very clear. It tells the story of a man and his wife who sold their land but did not give all of the money from the sale of their land to the apostles. Verses 5:1-11 read, "But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession, and kept back part of the price, his wife also being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles' feet.
"But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land?
"And Ananias hearing these words fell down, and gave up the ghost: and great fear came on all them that heard these things.
"And the young men arose, wound him up, and carried him out, and buried him.
"And it was about the space of three hours after, when his wife, not knowing what was done, came in.
"And Peter answered unto her, Tell me whether ye sold the land for so much? And she said, Yea, for so much.
"Then Peter said unto her, How is it that ye have agreed together to tempt the Spirit of the Lord? behold, the feet of them which have buried thy husband are at the door, and shall carry thee out.
"And great fear came upon all the church, and upon as many as heard these things."