Friday, December 7, 2007

Jesus' pick: Huckabee

From a talk at Jerry Falwell's Liberty University:

STUDENT: Recent polls show you surging... What do you attribute this surge to?

HUCKABEE: There's only one explanation for it, and it's not a human one. It's the same power that helped a little boy with two fish and five loaves feed a crowd of five thousand people. (Applause) That's the only way that our campaign can be doing what it's doing. And I'm not being facetious nor am I trying to be trite. There literally are thousands of people across this country who are praying that a little will become much, and it has. And it defies all explanation, it has confounded the pundits. And I'm enjoying every minute of them trying to figure it out, and until they look at it, from a, just experience beyond human, they'll never figure it out. And it's probably just as well. That's honestly why it's happening.

The Campaign Spot at NRO found this explanation in want:

Readers can draw their own conclusions on Huckabee’s meaning. As you probably can guess, this rubs me the wrong way. If Huckabee’s rise in the polls is the result of a factor that is not human, how about the declining poll numbers of his rivals?

It reminds me of a comedian’s joke about football players who point to the sky and thank God and/or Jesus when they score a touchdown. Nobody ever hears a defender say, “well, I thought I had him covered pretty well, but then Jesus got in my way.”

You probably expect me to agree with that. But I'm not sure I do. Praying to win in sports is silly. But sometimes the right person rises to be a leader at the right time, and if we begin with belief in an all-knowing God, isn't it possible that candidate had His endorsement?

That being said, there is a difference between the divine rule of kings and the God-ordained democracy of someone whom God has decided to use. And I'm not offering any credence to Huckabee's claim -- though, it may not be a claim and actually be a public praise. It's difficult to say. As I told a friend last night: I am wary to take at face value a politician's public expressions of something as naturally personal and private as faith and spirituality.

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