In the excitement of the Democratic National Convention and the build-up to the climactic speech by President Barack Obama, a local TV reporter broadcasted a report limited to the controversy surrounding the omission of the word God from the Democratic platform. The omission has since been corrected, but his story happened to mention the Republican platform contained the name God twelve times. I want to make a couple of observations as a Minister, Biblical Counselor, and Democrat.
One: the Democratic party is very diverse. It contains people who have different religious beliefs, cultures, customs, and backgrounds. The party is a true reflection of America as evidenced when the cameras at the convention panned out to show the crowd. It's not surprising that issues like this appear from time to time. But the strength of the party is its ability to stay together and move forward in spite of any differences that may occur.
Democrats understand that the political party is not the same as a church. In other words, we don't require all people to pass a "purity" or "litmus" test before joining. All people are welcome to be party members and to participate in the political process regardless of their beliefs or practices.
Two: it doesn't matter to God how many times a party writes His name in their platform. The real issue is not who had the name God written in their platform but who has operated with the intent to really help the poor and needy as God would want of us.
Republicans have God's name written in their platform twelve times, but the Pharisees in the bible had His name written on everything, including their robes. Yet they failed to show mercy and do just by others.
It's wrong to claim to be religious yet do things like pass voter-id laws aimed at keeping legal voters from the polls by using the excuse of wide-spread voter fraud. It's wrong to cut social programs that provide for the elderly, disabled, jobless, and the poor by using the excuse that they are all lazy criminals. It's wrong to blatantly lie about political issues or hate the President with an ungodly passion.
So before we proclaim one party to be holy and another to be problem plagued, let's remember the words of Jesus Himself:
"First get the beam out of your eye, then you can see clearly to remove the speck of dust from your brother's eye" (Matthew 7:3).
People are people and parties are parties. There is good and bad in them both, but let's talk about the true issues and not the score.