The finest thing I can say about Joe Biden’s Easter sermon is that Jill sounded crisp and clear. Reverend Joe, on the other hand? I thought his speech sounded a little on the medicated side at times. But then again, I was so distracted by the twisted message that I might be a bit slanted in my feelings.
To me, it all felt like propaganda. Our new president and first lady mentioned the virus, the vaccine, and all-things COVID repeatedly. By the time they finished, I’d totally forgotten the sermon was supposed to be about a Christian holy day and started to wonder if we were all supposed to worship at the foot of the pharmaceutical companies, not the cross. Sure sounded like it.
To be fair, there was some spiritual lingo in the message. They talked about hope and salvation. But when Jill added the words “from sorrow to salvation” she immediately spun the message to be—not about the cross—but the great hope that is springing up because of the stimulus monies the government just gave the American people.
Ah, the government. The great rescuer.
Here’s a tough reality: That stimulus money you received? That’s not salvation, folks. Sorry, but it’s not. Your handout from Uncle Sam might’ve offered momentary hope to your bank account, but it’s fleeting, at best. A better gift would have been to give you back all those customers you lost over the past year. You know, the ones who disappeared when the government shut down your business.
Wait—weren’t the lockdowns supposed to save us all?
No, wait. Masks were supposed to save us all.
Or, was it social distancing?
Regardless of how they’ve spun the message over the past year it has always boiled down to one key point: the government will be the one doing the saving. And this, I suppose, is why they don’t find it important to include the real Easter message, which is about the cross of Christ.
Honestly? As a person of faith, I’m cringing a little bit at the efforts made to spin a spiritual Easter message into a “Thank God your government saved you, now go forth and save each other” speech. It flies in the face of everything believers, well, believe.
Lest you think I’m completely off-base in my assessment, consider this line from President Biden: “We share the sentiments of Pope Francis who said that getting a vaccination is a moral obligation.”
Um. . .so, if you’re not getting a vaccination the Catholic church (and the Pope, himself) will think you’re immoral? Am I getting that right? And since our new president and first lady share the Pope’s sentiments, they will think you’re immoral, too. Is that it?
Makes me wonder how our new government leaders will begin to view (and treat) those who remain immoral for long.
Bet I can guess.
I would love to see the chapter and verse from the Bible that even remotely tilts in this direction. (Hint: there isn’t one.) But isn’t it interesting how Biden has finally found a way to connect with people of faith, by appealing to their “moral” side and tying it all to what could eventually become another government mandate?
Hey, start with making it moral. End with making it mandatory. I know that many already suspect this is how it will go.
And then came the clincher, the part where he suggested that spiritual leaders “encourage” their members to take the vaccine. Doing so, he suggested, would eventually save us all.
Look, I probably sound like I’m totally anti-vaccine. I’m not an anti-vaxxer at all. But neither am I a mandated-vaxxer. I totally believe each person should be completely free to choose for himself (or herself) what’s best for their personal health.
Where I really get my knickers in a knot is the “tying all of this to Easter” angle. That’s where the sermon deviated from spiritual to pure manipulation and near-heresy.
This Easter, according to our president, there was no real need to mention Christ. Heck, according to his message, you can save yourself and the planet, all in one fell swoop, just by becoming more dependent on the government and doing as they instruct. And when you share Biden’s message of morality with the masses, you’ll bring hope to all of mankind in the process.
Bet you didn’t know you had that kind of power, did you?