Last week, in a Senate confirmation hearing, Sen. Bernie Sanders accused Russell Vought of being unfit to serve as Deputy Director of the Office of Management and Budget (an accountant’s position) because he actually believes the teachings of Christ. It was a shocking attack on religious freedom, and as expected, has drawn almost no criticism from fellow Socialists or Democrats.
At question was Vought’s stated belief that the Bible is true and the words of Jesus are inspired. In his defense, Sanders has said he was not attacking Christianity, just the “narrow view” that only followers of Jesus are not condemned.
In other words, it’s okay in Sanders’ world for a person to follow Christ, so long as he doesn’t adhere to his teachings. What Sanders apparently doesn’t understand is that his problem is not with Russell Vought, but with Jesus Christ. Let me explain.
Jesus said, “He who does not believe on the Son of God stands condemned already” (John 3:18).
Amazingly, at no point in his testimony before the Senate committee did Mr. Vought espouse his religious views. It was Bernie Sanders who brought that up.
Aside from the fact that the Constitution clearly states that a person’s personal religious views are neither qualifiers nor disqualifiers for serving in government positions, and aside from his bigoted attack on the tenets of Christianity, Sanders misses one pertinent point.
Nearly all religions teach their way is the only way.
To the Muslim, non-Muslims are considered infidels. Sen. Sanders, why have you not called on Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) to step down over his narrow Muslim beliefs? Why have you not called on Senators Feinstein, Blumenthal, Schatz, Cardin, Franken, Schumer, and Wyden to step down, given their Jewish faith that considers only Jews to be God’s chosen people?
Here’s the point. Christianity, Islam, and Judaism all teach different paths to God. Each believes it has the real truth. In that sense, each is equally “narrow.”
At no point in the Senate hearing did Mr. Vought say non-Christians stand condemned. He merely said, when asked, that he is a Christian. And he did not deny the Christ he follows, even for Mr. Sanders’ benefit. And that, in Sanders’ world, makes him unfit to serve as an accountant on the federal payroll.
It is interesting that Sanders has never criticized any of the aforementioned politicians for their adherence to Muslim or Jewish beliefs. It is interesting that every one of them is, like Sanders, a Democrat.
So what is Bernie Sanders’ real problem with Russell Vought serving as an accountant for the federal government? Is it that he is really against him because Vought is a Republican? Or does Bernie Sanders legitimately believe that a person who believes John 3:18, who will not brand Jesus a liar or false teacher (for his words of John 3:18 and elsewhere), is thereby unfit for public service?
Taking Sanders at his word, it appears Mr. Vought has committed a sin far greater than being a Republican. He is a Christian – who worse yet, actually believes and follows the teachings of Christ.
I freely admit a person can be a follower of Christ and a supporter of Bernie Sanders at the same time. I know several who are. But the Christian left has been completely silent in their criticism of Sanders’ attack on Christianity. In the face of Sanders’ finding that a person who actually believes in the teachings of Jesus Christ is unfit to serve, the Christian left has been compliant with their silence. From them we have heard no condemnation. No criticism. Nothing.
And that is the saddest part of this story.