JD Greear urges pastors not to call VP Kamala Harris ‘Jezebel,' but to pray for her

"Greear’s guidance comes in the wake of SBC’s pastors, including SBC Executive Committee member Steve Swofford, referring to the vice president by the term." - C.Post

Related: RNS, Jan 29 - Some Southern Baptist pastors are calling Kamala Harris ‘Jezebel.’ What do they mean?

1703 reads

There are 32 Comments

Aaron Blumer's picture

EditorAdmin

There could be reasons to compare any powerful woman to the biblical Jezebel. But two factors that are important in this:

  • What a pastor says to his congregation privately vs. what he says to the world. If you've led a congregation for a while, you have a good idea of what will be understood as you mean it vs. badly misunderstood. Your chances of calling someone famous Jezebel publicly and being understood as anything but hateful, etc., are pretty small.
  • A disease that afflicts much of conservative Christianity is that they've decided to walk off the field and join the booing section in the stands. All they do is jeer all the time. They don't look for anything positive to appreciate. They don't look for ways to work together. They don't build anything. They have left the field.
    • This isn't a new thing, though I think the politicization of everything has made it far worse. I attended some churches like this in 90's, only the target of the incessant jeering (and implied self congratulation) was "the neo-evangelicals" or "the world" or "compromisers" or "pseudo-fundamentalists."
    • Regardless of the target, the disease is the same: you can't edify those who need edifying if all you ever do is attack everyone else. There's a time to deconstruct, but what ever happened to building something? Whatever happened to being self-critical in the interest of growth?

Views expressed are always my own and not my employer's, my church's, my family's, my neighbors', or my pets'. The house plants have authorized me to speak for them, however, and they always agree with me.

josh p's picture

Just listened this morning to R.G. Lee’s sermon, “Payday Sunday” that he preached over 1000 times. It involves her and I was reminded of how horrible Jezebel was. It’s absurd, and wrong for a pastor to speak that way about our country’s leaders.

Robert Byers's picture

As far as we know, Jezebel didn't advance her career by sleeping with married guys.  As far as we know, Jezebel only killed innocent adults instead of facilitating the murder of (at least) hundreds of thousands of unborn children.  As far as we know, Jezebel only suborned justice against one man rather than hundreds.

Using that name for the current Vice President is an insult to Jezebel.

T Howard's picture

...when John McCain chose Sara Palin as his VP. Many conservative Christians were likening her to Esther.  "For such a time as this..." Blah. Blah. Blah.

I hate it when we mix politics with out-of-context religious references. Stupid stuff that does absolutely nothing to advance the gospel. Just like the crazy political pragmatism we've seen the last four years in conservative Christian circles.

Bert Perry's picture

I actually read that down South , "Jezebel" is in some regards a racial slur.  My experience in southern culture is insufficient to determine that.  So that plays in here.

My experience is that I've not heard of people calling women "Jezebels" except for indirectly--e.g. women complaining about others referring to them in that way.  I am no expert in this, for which I am thankful.

That said, what you're saying when you call someone "Jezebel" is "you are a non-member of our society who aims to bring the worst of pagan society into our land", no?  (even if it's not a racial slur!)  I would therefore concur with Aaron that using the term is an odd way of trying to persuade.  Maybe try "we disagree" or "we think this course of action is a great moral offense" (especially vis-a-vis the abortion issue).

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Mark_Smith's picture

Is it ok to call VP Harris an unrighteous ungodly person whom no Christian should look to as a role model? Is it ok to say that her policies are an abomination and should be opposed at every opportunity?

Bert Perry's picture

josh p wrote:

Just listened this morning to R.G. Lee’s sermon, “Payday Sunday” that he preached over 1000 times. It involves her and I was reminded of how horrible Jezebel was. It’s absurd, and wrong for a pastor to speak that way about our country’s leaders.

That's 20 years of Sunday mornings.  Did he have any other sermons?  I'm not against repeating things that are worth repeating, but there is a point where you've got to ask whether the preacher is having something of a crisis of creativity!

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

T Howard's picture

Mark_Smith wrote:
Is it ok to call VP Harris an unrighteous ungodly person whom no Christian should look to as a role model?

As long as you apply this to Donald J Trump as well.

[Oh, SNAP!]

Mark_Smith's picture

Seems to me you've been calling him that for a while!

Snap back at ya!

T Howard's picture

Mark_Smith wrote:

Seems to me you've been calling him that for a while!

Snap back at ya!

So, would that make Trump an "Ahab"? Funny how many Christians didn't view Trump in that light. Instead, they viewed him practically as their political messiah.

Mark_Smith's picture

The actions of Trump end of the Trump presidency was tragic. I do not support him for any office any longer. I support many of the policies he promoted over the years however.

dcbii's picture

EditorModerator

T Howard wrote:

 

Mark_Smith wrote:
Is it ok to call VP Harris an unrighteous ungodly person whom no Christian should look to as a role model?

As long as you apply this to Donald J Trump as well.

Outside of maybe the Jerry Falwell Jr. branch of evangelicalism (and I'm speculating on that one given what I've read), I've heard NO preacher call Trump a godly person to whom a Christian should took as a role model, and I'm fairly certain you haven't read that here on SI either.

Dave Barnhart

Mark_Smith's picture

Do you support Harris and Biden's policies to open the border, open up transgender, LGBTQ etc rights? Abortion provisions as well.

T Howard's picture

dcbii wrote:
Outside of maybe the Jerry Falwell Jr. branch of evangelicalism (and I'm speculating on that one given what I've read), I've heard NO preacher call Trump a godly person to whom a Christian should took as a role model, and I'm fairly certain you haven't read that here on SI either.

Dave, from reading some on SI, Trump was the best thing to happen to the Republican party since Reagan. Christians who didn't support Trump were delusional.

NEXT!

dcbii's picture

EditorModerator

Mark_Smith wrote:

Do you support Harris and Biden's policies to open the border, open up transgender, LGBTQ etc rights? Abortion provisions as well.

Plenty of people here on SI have made it abundantly clear that policies like those you refer to here are MUCH less of an evil or problem to them than Trump was.

Dave Barnhart

dcbii's picture

EditorModerator

T Howard wrote:

Dave, from reading some on SI, Trump was the best thing to happen to the Republican party since Reagan.

That's a long ways from calling him godly or a role model for Christianity.

Dave Barnhart

T Howard's picture

Mark_Smith wrote:

Do you support Harris and Biden's policies to open the border, open up transgender, LGBTQ etc rights? Abortion provisions as well.

No, but I'm not going to refer to Biden as the antichrist and to Harris as Jezebel. That's just plain moronic.

dcbii's picture

EditorModerator

T Howard wrote:

No, but I'm not going to refer to Biden as the antichrist and to Harris as Jezebel. That's just plain moronic.

Wow.  Something on which we can actually agree.

Dave Barnhart

Mark_Smith's picture

Are these people actually calling Biden "the anti-Christ" and Harris "the Jezebel", or are they saying Biden has an "anti-Christ like worldview" and Harris a "Jezebel-like worldview."

KD Merrill's picture

T Howard wrote:

 

Mark_Smith wrote:
Is it ok to call VP Harris an unrighteous ungodly person whom no Christian should look to as a role model?

 

As long as you apply this to Donald J Trump as well.

[Oh, SNAP!]

I'm literally shocked that our betters haven't admonished us regarding the evils of "whataboutism" in light of this comment.

Also, the obligatory, "Can we stop discussing politics?" seems nowhere to be found.  Huh.

TylerR's picture

Editor

That comment came from Tom Buck (PhD, Southern Seminary), who (to quote Aaron) has "left the field" and does little but attack people on Twitter like a mad dog. I am fairly certain he's a very different man in real life, but he has adopted the persona of the enraged Christian warrior in cyberspace, unfortunately.

Tyler is a pastor in Olympia, WA and works in State government. He's the author of the book What's It Mean to Be a Baptist?

T Howard's picture

KD Merrill wrote:
I'm literally shocked that our betters haven't admonished us regarding the evils of "whataboutism" in light of this comment.

I would have thought the [Oh, SNAP!] comment would have been a context clue to you that I made my comment in jest.

But, if you're still salty for rightly being called out for "whataboutism," I was joking.

Larry's picture

Moderator

Did he have any other sermons?  I'm not against repeating things that are worth repeating, but there is a point where you've got to ask whether the preacher is having something of a crisis of creativity!

It is common for people who speak as a guest speaker to frequently repeat the same sermon. In fact, in many cases, it is a requested. So no, this isn't really an indication of anything.

Larry's picture

Moderator

This seems a tempest in a teapot. The point of the comment seems clear: Should we aspire to be like someone simply because they are in a position of power? Why is Kamala Harris a cause for celebration rather than grief? Why is she held up as a model simply because she was attached a man who got elected to the presidency? Harris was so compelling as a candidate she was polling in very low single digits and dropped out of the race prior to the first primary. In other words, her own party didn't even like her and want her to be president. 

Whether or not it is wise to call her Jezebel is quite simply missing the point.

But why not answer the question: Would anyone hold up Jezebel as a role model simply because she was queen? Isn't the obvious answer "No"? And since that is the obvious answer, why is this different?

Mark_Smith's picture

I mean that. I genuinely pray for them. And not one of those "God make them believe what I believe" prayers either. I pray that the spirit of God would come on them and transform them by his mighty power.

Jonathan Charles's picture

There is absolutely nothing wrong with pointing out how ungodly leaders today are like the ungodly leaders in Scripture.  Maybe a metaphor is too strong and a simile should be used.  "This leader is like Jezebel," or "This leader is like King Saul/Herod/Pilate," and then explain how.   

T Howard's picture

Jonathan Charles wrote:

There is absolutely nothing wrong with pointing out how ungodly leaders today are like the ungodly leaders in Scripture.  Maybe a metaphor is too strong and a simile should be used.  "This leader is like Jezebel," or "This leader is like King Saul/Herod/Pilate," and then explain how.   

This technique is really just Christian virtue signaling.

josh p's picture

Bert Perry wrote:

 

josh p wrote:

 

Just listened this morning to R.G. Lee’s sermon, “Payday Sunday” that he preached over 1000 times. It involves her and I was reminded of how horrible Jezebel was. It’s absurd, and wrong for a pastor to speak that way about our country’s leaders.

 

 

That's 20 years of Sunday mornings.  Did he have any other sermons?  I'm not against repeating things that are worth repeating, but there is a point where you've got to ask whether the preacher is having something of a crisis of creativity!

Yeah I agree. Crazy if true. It was pretty good though... 

josh p's picture

Mark_Smith wrote:

Is it ok to call VP Harris an unrighteous ungodly person whom no Christian should look to as a role model? Is it ok to say that her policies are an abomination and should be opposed at every opportunity?

Of course.

Pages