According to MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell, the Bible should have no role in Obama's upcoming inauguration ceremony because, as he claimed Thursday, it is "filled with things that no one in the United States of America believes," a statement that some Christians may take issue with.
"The news that Passion City Church of Atlanta Pastor Louie Giglio lost the honor of giving the benediction at the inaugural ceremonies because he delivered anti-gay sermons, O’Donnell said, is a reminder of how much undue influence the Bible has in modern discourse," the Daily Caller reported.
“It turns out there is no better way for a pastor to get kicked out of the inauguration ceremony than quoting the Bible,” O'Donnell told his audience.
“That is what Louie Giglio, of Passion City Church in Atlanta, did to get knocked out of this year’s inauguration," he added. "His participation was announced at 9 a.m. on Tuesday by the Presidential Inaugural Committee. It took all of a day for something to surface in his Giglio’s sermonizing past that made him persona non grata at the swearing-in of a president who is in favor of gay rights, including marriage equality.”
Observing that Giglio’s sermons cited biblical passages warning against “sexual immorality,” O'Donnell said that “homosexuality is a sin in the Bible.”
“We will ensure that whoever delivers the benediction rejects the same parts of the Bible that President Obama rejects and most Democrats reject, even though every word of the Bible is the word of God,” he promised before claiming that there are parts of the Bible that "no one accepts."
"As I've pointed out," he added, "no one accepts all of the teachings of the Bible. No one."
"Still, the president, following one of our most absurdest traditions in the government that invented the separation of church and state, will put his hand on this book filled with things he does not believe – filled with things that no one in the United States of America believes – and with his hand on this book he will recite the oath of office," he said.
O'Donnell suggested that Obama place his hand on one of his daughters instead.
“Now, wouldn’t it be better if the president’s hand was on the shoulder of one of his daughters, suggesting that he was honoring the oath of office as much as he honors Sasha and Malia?” he asked.
A commenter at the Daily Caller suggested that Obama "should finally 'out' himself and put his hand on the Koran."
"At least then I could respect him for having the courage of his convictions," the commenter said.
An article at The Blaze said that Obama intends to use not one Bible for the inauguration, but two -- one that was owned by Martin Luther King Jr. and one by Abraham Lincoln.
There is no Constitutional requirement that a Bible be used in the swearing-in ceremony, but the Blaze adds that "George Washington began the tradition with a Bible hastily grabbed from St. John’s Masonic Lodge No. 1 for his swearing-in on April 30, 1789, in New York."
Since then, Billy Hallowell wrote, "presidents have typically chosen Bibles with historical or personal significance, many using family heirlooms."
Obama would be the fourth president to use two Bibles, following Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower and Richard Nixon.
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