Former SBC officer prayed for abortion doctor’s death; now praying same for Obama
For the generally uninitiated, SBC is the acronym for the country's largest Protestant body, the Southern Baptist Convention. The SBC claims 16-million members in 42-thousand churches across the United States. There are many days I'm quite embarrassed to say I used to be one of those 16-million. Today would be one of those days. Wiley Drake is the pastor of First Southern Baptist Church in Buena Park, California. Three years ago, messengers to the annual national meeting of the SBC elected Wiley Drake Second Vice-President of the entire denomination. Crusade Radio program listeners that he was glad George Tiller, a controversial abortion doctor in Kansas, was dead. Later that day, he explained to Fox Radio News host Alan Colmes that he had prayed for God to deal with George Tiller and consequently believed Tiller's murder at his Wichita, Kansas Lutheran church last Sunday morning was an answer to prayer. He continued by admitting that he's praying the same for President Obama. Reverend Drake calls his prayers "imprecatory prayers." He says they're biblical. I've been in church my entire adult life. I've studied the Bible and prayed with some of Christianity's most brilliant thinkers, proclaimers, and mystics. I had to look up the term "imprecatory" today. It's an adjective used to describe something that invokes evil curses. So an imprecatory prayer is one that implores God to do something cursed or evil to the subject of the prayer. I have to say, I don't care for the idea. Christians praying a hit list (Reverend Drake's terminology, not mine) sounds about as right to me as a radical Sunni extremist shouting, "God curse America." It seems altogether frightening and crazy...not to mention unholy. Whisper your wishes for hives or baldness or sudden weight gain when you feel you must. End the incantation with jerk or loser or idiot if it makes you feel better. Can we save "amen" for our petitions for compassion, justice, understanding, love... ...and peace?