The Obamas Spend Easter at St. John’s, Pastor Forgets Basic Christianity 101

The Obama Family walks, under armed escort (i.e. guys with guns), to church.

The Obama Family walks, under armed escort (i.e. guys with guns), to church. (Source: AP)

On Easter the Obama family walked to the famed St. Johns Episcopal Church where, according to church history, every president since James Madison has visited.

Newsbusters pointed out a line [link] during the sermon that was conveniently omitted from the AP report [link] , but I noticed something else that is troubling.

Before I go on, it should be noted that Easter is the central moment of Christianity. Jesus is raised from the dead in order to defeat death and sin and allow a way for mankind to have access to God. This is not some obscure theological point — it’s Christianity 101.

Except the preacher, Rev. Dr. Luis Leon, didn’t seem to get the memo.

The sermon by Rev. Dr. Luis Leon was based on the Gospel of John and the Resurrection of Jesus. Leon said the message of Easter was about the “proclamation of victory, the victory of powerful love over loveless power.”

Apparently at St. John’s Easter isn’t about Jesus’ victory over sin and death. Instead it seems Jesus was making a point about people who have power on earth but don’t have love.


He said the “Easter vision” was the ability of the congregation to recognize the presence of Christ in their life, which would allow them to see the world in a new way without pain, loneliness, injustice, war, hate and despair [emphasis mine]. Instead, with the new vision, he intoned, they can see with love, hope and truth.
If the reporter, Stacy A. Anderson of the AP, has accurately captured the essence of the sermon, then the point of Easter at St. John’s is not about mankind being reconciled to God, but about some utopian ideal we can create here on earth ourselves.

While Jesus spoke of his followers being “salt and light,” He did not teach any sort of utopian hope for this world. On the contrary, he left his followers with a much different picture:

“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you.” – John 15:18-20

Interesting, maybe the Rev. Dr. Leon hasn’t made it completely through the book of John yet.

In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” – John 16:33

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About Keith

Christian, Conservative, Husband, Father, Writer.

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