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Religious Leaders React to Rev. Wright

Following Rev. Jeremiah Wright's speech at the National Press Club on Monday, The Post's Hamil Harris spoke with several religious leaders who were in attendance:

"It took this outpouring of slanting, of stereotyping by soundbites to get the press involved and they have heard things that they have never heard before," the Rev. Deborah Reynolds told Harris about Wright's comments. "They've had a teaching on Black liberation theology, they've been encouraged to embrace each other's differences. So it's been very positive for the Black church experience."

(New York Daily News columnist Errol Lewis raises questions today about Reynolds' involvement with Wright's speech.)

For many, Wright's appearance was less about him, and more about starting a national discussion about racism.

"Finally, we can once and forever have a serious dialogue to address the issue of race in America," the Rev. Willie Wilson told Harris for today's editions of The Post.

"Beyond the presidential election, until we deal with racism in America, we're never going to build the America we all hope for," said the Rev. Michael Louis Pfleger, of St. Sabina's Catholic Church in Chicago.

-- Ed O'Keefe

By Ed O'Keefe |  April 29, 2008; 1:54 PM ET Barack Obama
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As much as Rev. Wright is correct in high-lighting race issues in America, and the apparent complicity of the US government on the plight of people of African extraction (and in the negative view of the USA in international politics which many believe is directly linked to the hatred or resentment of the US abroad), as a Black person and a Christian, I vehemently repudiate his style of conversation about these issues.

Rev. Wright comes across as an angry man full of hatred and revulsion for the American Caucasian race. To me, the concept of Black liberation theology is inimical to the spirit of Christianity as espoused by Jesus. The Jewish nation is Jesus' time was just as wrong, which to a great degree explains the reason why they rejected (and still reject) Jesus as the bona fide Messiah. Because in their eyes Jesus was not militant enough against the injustices of the repressive Roman occupying forces, the Jews rejected Him. Their confusion over the placement in time of the "Lion of Judah" Jesus made them fail to see "the Lamb of God" Jesus when He came, essentially as a sin Savior as predicted by Isaiah the Prophet (Isaiah 53: 5). (There is a second coming in the clouds of heaven - Rev. 1: 7 - when Jesus shall, indeed and finally, appear as the conquering Lion of Judah to visit judgment and recompense upon ALL flesh).

While we as Christians we must act and speak against injustices in this world, the character of that action and the tone of the language should never be raw and incendiary, apt to me classified as hate and anger. To doing that would be to pander to the base elements of our unregenerate human nature. Rev. Wright might be a sincere man of God, but he is sincerely wrong for LORDING his un-Biblical conduct on the American people (especially the African Americans) and couching his views as the Gospel. The Apostle Paul once PUBLICALLY rebuked the Apostle Peter for the latter's racial and cultural prejudice. I fear Rev. Wright is as delusional as Peter was by refusing to see that his seniority in the Church, by position and experience, does not make him - whatsoever - immune to error. He is NOT Jesus to set the rules of what so-called Black Theology is all about. Many, I am sure, do not agree with him; certainly I don't!

As for Barack Obama, I applaud his initial meek attempt to send a signal to the Reverend about his error. For Rev. Wright to ignore these overtures from a 'protégé' who respectfully disagreed with him TO THE DEGREE THAT HE (the Reverend) would countenance hurting Obama's chances in the quest for questionable glory, confirms, irredeemably, the sad state of Rev. Wright's mind and spiritual condition. A man would never betray his friend, especially so publicly. However, when he does, the repudiation of that betrayal needs to be as public (a.k.a. Paul, hence Obama's stance.

The sad thing here is that the racist and hatemonger in America , who is as deluded as Rev. Wright, would pounce on this sad episode to denigrate Obama himself. Can a man not talk for himself as define himself (in Obama's case) just as the Reverend has?

Let avoid the double standard!!! GORW UP, AMERICA, lest you be condemned to a sad end.

Posted by: Shumi | April 30, 2008 10:14 AM

The Reverend J. Wright has in some way side stepped his spiritual calling and is somewhat sliding into politics. What has he been doing all those years? Why had he never come out so forceful before like he is coming out now about the issue of racism in America?
The positive side of this sad story is that "these are the wounds Barrack Obama is trying to heal when he says change is needed in America. He is a man who is preaching peace and stands for the positive image that the U.S should portray to the rest of the world.He deserves a chance to bring change that is so badly needed to heal the hurting souls and the raw wounds of those still hurting like the Reverend Jeremiah Wright!Democrats give Barrack Obama a chance to bring POSITIVE CHANGE to the U.S.A

Posted by: Anonymous | April 30, 2008 1:09 PM

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