The NYT has a very helpful piece today on Sarah Palin's theology. Money quote:
Critics say the goal of the spiritual warfare movement is to create a theocracy. Bruce Wilson, a researcher for Talk2Action, a Web site that tracks religious groups, said: “One of the imperatives of the movement is to achieve worldly power, including political control. Then you can more effectively drive out the demons. The ultimate goal is to purify the earth.”
This is now a conservative notion: purifying the earth? It's striking to me, after all the legitimate interest in Trinity United and Obama, that Palin's deep and long relationship withe the movement known as "spiritual warfare" has not been more discussed. Jeremiah Wright has had exponentially more air time than Pastor Muthee, and yet Wright is a milque-toast establishmentarian compared to the witchcraft-believing theocrat who has personally blessed Palin and now dominates her home-town church:
Ms. Palin has had long associations with religious leaders who practice a particularly assertive and urgent brand of Pentecostalism known as “spiritual warfare.” Its adherents believe that demonic forces can colonize specific geographic areas and individuals, and that “spiritual warriors” must “battle” them to assert God’s control, using prayer and evangelism. The movement’s fixation on demons, its aggressiveness and its leaders’ claims to exalted spiritual authority have troubled even some Pentecostal Christians...
Russell P. Spittler, provost emeritus at Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena, Calif., and an eminent scholar of Pentecostalism, said, “Most Christians would accept the view that there are forces and powers in the world that oppose Christian virtues.” But, Mr. Spittler added, “Spiritual warfare makes a religion of identifying demons by names and ZIP codes.”
Just as troubling as the content of this kind of superstitious Christianism is the McCain-Palin's response to questions about it. The usual, creepy refusal to talk:
Ms. Palin declined an interview, and the McCain campaign did not respond to specific questions about her faith. Thus, it is difficult to say with certainty what she believes.
So we have the possibility of a witchcraft-believing, earth-purifying theocrat in the White House and they won't even respond to questions about it. Reassured much?
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.