WHAT DOES PRESIDENT OBAMA BELIEVE
ABOUT JESUS CHRIST?

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

A sermon preached on Lord’s Day Morning, November 9, 2008
at the Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles


My mother had by far the greatest influence on my life.  She was an old-fashioned Franklin D. Roosevelt Democrat, who taught me from an early age to believe that all races should be respected and given equal rights.  I still believe that – in the very core of my being.  That is why I have spent fifty years preaching to people from many racial backgrounds in the inner city of Los Angeles.  Our church is made up of people from five different ethnic groups.  My sermons go out on the Internet to people who speak nine different languages, including Arabic, Indonesian, Tagalog, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Russian and English.  My sermons are read on all six continents of the world - including several nations in Africa.  My mother’s influence would have made it very natural for me to support a black man as intelligent and eloquent as Barack Obama for President.  In fact tears came to my eyes as he gave his acceptance speech on Tuesday night.  As I prayed for God to protect him, I felt proud that we finally have a black President.  Abraham Lincoln would have rejoiced to hear his acceptance speech last Tuesday night. 

The TV showed Jesse Jackson standing in the crowd with tears streaming down his face.  When I saw that, I was deeply moved as well.   In that moment I prayed that we would all be one people, not white-Americans and African-Americans and Asian-Americans and Hispanic-Americans.  No!  Just Americans!  One nation under God!  Let us stand for the Pledge of Allegiance. 

I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands: one Nation under God, indivisible, With Liberty and Justice for all.

Yes, I prayed for President Obama - but I did not vote for him.  The reason I did not vote for him had nothing to do with race.  But I did not vote for him because I disagree with him on issues that I consider even more important than racial equality.  President Obama’s belief in abortion on demand made it impossible for me to support him.  Why?  Because I put the right to life above racial equality.  Why?  Because racial equality is meaningless unless we believe in the sanctity of all human life.  The Declaration of Independence is still true. 

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Racial equality is meaningless unless we believe in the “unalienable,” unchangeable, unalterable, undeniable right to life itself for every American, including black American babies in their mothers’ wombs!

Along with the absolute right to life, I put Jesus Christ above racial equality, because it is the teachings of Christ that make racial equality possible.  Without Christ there would be no democracy – and without democracy there would be no such thing as racial equality.  We were all made equal by Christ.  Therefore Christ comes before racial equality, because racial equality comes from Him and from His teachings. 

Christ is more important than all else – including America itself.  He is either Lord of all, or He is not Lord at all.  And it is because I value Christ more than I value my country, my race, or anything else in life, that I am free to defend and proclaim Him, no matter what criticism it may bring to me personally.  My allegiance to Christ frees me to criticize the church of which Barack Obama was a member for over twenty years.  And my allegiance to Christ makes it possible for me to criticize the false views of Obama’s long-time pastor, Dr. Jeremiah Wright. 

Those who are closest to me will know that the following sermon does not stem from racism, but from my allegiance to Jesus Christ, the Lord of history and the Saviour of mankind. Please turn to our text, in Matthew 22:41-42 and stand with me for the reading of God's Word. 

“While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, Saying, What think ye of Christ? whose son is he? They say unto him, The Son of David” (Matthew 22:41-42).

You may be seated.

The Pharisees were the Orthodox Jews of Jesus’ time. They believed the Bible. They believed in God. They believed in the coming Messiah. When Jesus asked them, “What think ye of Christ? whose son is he?” they gave an answer that was partly correct. The word “Christ” in the text is the Greek equivalent of “Messiah,” the coming redeemer. Jesus asked them what they thought about the Messiah, and “whose son is he?” Their answer was partly correct, for they said that the Messiah was to be “the son of David.” This was the ancient way of saying that the coming Christ would be a descendant of David. So, these Pharisees were partly right, because Jesus was a descendant of David, as we see in the genealogy of Jesus in Matthew 1:1-17. But they were only partly correct, for they did not see Him as the Son of God.

The Jesus of the Bible is both man and God. Physically, He is a Jew, “the son of David.” But He is more than that. He is also the Son of God. Thus, the Christ of Scripture is the incarnate God who came to earth in the flesh of a Jew, as the Son of David. Christ is the Son of God and the Son of man, both in one person. That is the Christ of the Bible! He is both man and God in one person. That is the Christ of history and Scripture.

Yet there are preachers today in some so-called “Christian” churches who are farther from the truth about Christ than the Pharisees. They do not see the truth concerning Christ’s race. I know we hate to hear the word “race” today. But sometimes we need to hear that word, especially when it is applied to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Jesus warned us that “There shall arise false Christs, and false prophets” in the closing days of history (Matthew 24:24). One of the “false Christs” of our day is the false Christ of Dr. Jeremiah Wright, the controversial preacher who was President-elect Barack Obama’s pastor for over twenty years. There can be no question that Dr. Wright’s Christ is one of the “false Christs” that Jesus warned us would be proclaimed in the end times.

I heard a part of one of Dr. Wright’s sermons played on television many times before the election. The media picked up on some of the statements he made about white people being evil. That part didn’t particularly bother me. Having been a preacher for over fifty years, I would have to say that he was at least partly right, because a great many white people are very evil today. Dr. Wright also said some things about God judging America. That, too, didn’t particularly bother me because I myself believe that God is judging America for her many sins. Dr. John R. Rice preached a famous sermon in 1943, during World War II, called "America Gets Back Her Scrap Iron." Dr. Rice said that America was being punished for her sins. Many preachers have spoken on this theme across the years.

The point Dr. Jeremiah Wright made which deeply troubled me was not what he said about the sinfulness of many white Americans. What troubled me was his view of Christ Himself. I heard Dr. Wright say that Jesus was a black man who was persecuted by white European Romans. When I heard him say that on TV I said out loud, “That’s not right! That’s not the real Jesus!” I said that because Christ was not a black man who was persecuted by white Europeans. That isn’t what the Bible teaches about the real Christ at all! Nowhere in the New Testament are we told that the Lord Jesus Christ was a black man. It just isn’t in the Bible!

The media people are portraying Dr. Wright as “some nut.” But they are wrong. He is not just some “nut.” What he preaches about Christ is taught in so-called “mainstream” [liberal] theological seminaries, like the ones from which Dr. Wright graduated.

Dr. Wright went to a very leftist, yet “mainstream,” seminary for his theological training. He studied the writings of “Black Liberation” theologian Dr. James H. Cone, long-time professor at Union Theological Seminary in New York. That is how Dr. Wright learned that “Jesus was a black man persecuted by white Europeans.” An article for the McClatchy Newspapers by Margaret Talev said:

      Jesus is black. Merging Marxism [Communism] with Christian Gospel may show the way to a better tomorrow. The white church in America is the Antichrist...
      Those are some of the more provocative doctrines that animate the theology at the core of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, Barack Obama's church...
      Wright has said that a basis for [his] philosophies is the work of James Cone, who founded the modern black liberation theology movement out of the civil rights struggles of the 1960s. Particularly influential was Cone's seminal 1969 book, "Black Theology & Black Power"...
      [Wright's] congregation embraces the idea that Jesus was black. It's historically supported left-wing social and foreign policies, from South Africa to Latin America to the Middle East...
      Obama...joined Trinity in his late twenties when he worked as a community organizer ("Obama's Church Pushes Controversial Doctrines," by Margaret Talev, for the McClatchy Newspapers, March 20, 2008; http://www.mcclatchydc.com/227/story/31079.html).

But Dr. Jeremiah Wright is not just the “nut” we were told he was by the secular media. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in 1968 and a Master’s degree in English in 1969 at Howard University. He also earned a Master’s degree from the University of Chicago Divinity School. And he holds a Doctor of Ministry degree (1990) from the United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio. Dr. Wright also received a prestigious Rockefeller Fellowship, and holds seven honorary doctoral degrees from such schools as Colgate University, Valparaiso University, United Theological Seminary and Chicago Theological Seminary. He was also awarded the Carver Medal by Simpson College in January 2008, which recognized Dr. Wright as “an outstanding individual.” Dr. Wright is also the author of fourteen published books on various subjects. Dr. Wright has also been a professor at Chicago Theological Seminary, at Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary and other educational institutions. He has also held several prestigious positions on boards and committees of several other religious and civic institutions.

The secular media, both conservative and liberal, labeled him as just a “nut.” But they were wrong. He is a highly trained and highly respected clergyman. It seems to me that the media description of him as “just a nut” is wholly unwarranted, in the light of his many accomplishments in life.

But I must be faithful to the Bible, rather than the unscriptural teachings that he learned from Black liberation theologian Dr. James O. Cone of the far-left Union Theological Seminary in New York, teachings that permeate Dr. Wright’s sermons to this very day. Dr. Cone’s books taught Jeremiah Wright the black liberation theology that he still believes and preaches. But the Bible makes it very clear that Jesus was not the black man Dr. Cone’s books taught Jeremiah Wright to believe in. On that point the Pharisees were right when they said that Christ was “the Son of David” (Matthew 22:42). And Dr. Jeremiah Wright is dead wrong when He says Christ is a black man. Christ was not a black man or a white European. He was a Jew "according to the flesh" (Romans 1:3).

"But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law [as a Jew], To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons" (Galatians 4:4-5).

The media people didn’t pick up on this theological error because most of them are quite ignorant of the Bible and liberal Protestant theology. That's why the news stories focused on his comments about the sins of white America, rather than the far more important topic of who Christ is. Jesus said,

“What think ye of Christ? whose son is he? They say unto him, The Son of David” (Matthew 22:41-42).

Dr. Wright’s belief that Jesus was black shows that he is more in the dark about who Christ really is than those Pharisees who turned on Him and ultimately called for His crucifixion.

Also, I was troubled that the next President was a member of Dr. Wright’s church, and heard him preach this false view of Christ for over twenty years. President Barack Obama heard twenty years of preaching which said, “Jesus Christ was a black man, who was persecuted by the white European Romans.” So, on the basis of the Bible, I would have to say that Barack Obama heard sermons on a “false Christ” for most of his adult life in Dr. Wright’s church. Obama didn’t just drop in occasionally to Wright’s church. He and his family were members of that church, who were there on countless Sundays for over twenty years. President and Mrs. Obama were married in a ceremony conducted by Dr. Wright. The Obama children were baptized by Dr. Wright. And Dr. Wright was a frequent visitor in the Obama home, and was considered a family friend. And the record shows that President Obama heard many sermons from Wright on the “black Christ.” 

I know some will criticize me for bringing this to light, but it is the truth – and God called me to preach the truth about Jesus Christ. Therefore, in spite of any criticism I may receive, I must say, after hearing twenty years of Dr. Wright’s preaching, that Barack Obama undoubtedly believes in the “false Christ” of the Black Liberation Theology that Dr. Wright learned from Black Liberation theologian Dr. James H. Cone of Union Seminary in New York. I would, therefore, have to say, as strongly as possible, that it is virtually certain that Barack Obama believes in a false black Christ, rather than the real Christ, who is a Jew, a descendant of David! What does Barack Obama believe about Jesus Christ?

Why doesn’t someone ask President Obama if he still agrees with Dr. Wright that Christ was a black man? Why doesn’t someone in the news media ask Obama to answer whether he believes in the radical Black Christ of “Liberation Theology” that he was taught by Dr. Wright, and which Dr. Wright preaches to this day? He could give an easy answer of “yes” or “no,” couldn’t he? After all, couldn’t you answer with a “yes” or “no”? Why doesn't some reporter ask him that – “Do you believe that Christ was a black man who was persecuted and crucified by European White Romans? Please answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’.” It seems that the media owes the American people an investigation of his beliefs about Christ, and needs to make them public.

Now, the Bible says again and again, in various ways and in many passages, that Jesus Christ was a Jew, the Son of David, not a black man. Please turn with me to Romans 1:1-4. Let us stand and read these four verses aloud.

“Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God, (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,) Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead” (Romans 1:1-4).

You may be seated.

I. First, Christ physically is a descendant of David, and therefore a Jew,
not a black man.

This passage of Scripture in Romans tells us two facts about Jesus Christ. First, we are told in verse three that He “was made of the seed of David according to the flesh” (Romans 1:3). The 1599 Geneva Bible says, of this verse, that Christ, “as touching his humanity, is made of the seed of David.” As to His human nature, Christ is a descendant of David – and therefore a Jew.

When Jesus was traveling through Samaria, He stopped at Jacob’s well. A Samaritan woman came to the well to fill her water bottle. The Samaritans were non-Jewish. For this reason she was astonished when Jesus said to her, “Give me to drink” (John 4:7). The Jews of Jesus’ day had no contact with the Samaritans, and especially not with a Samaritan woman. The woman was very surprised when Jesus asked her for some of the water she had drawn up from the well. She said to Him,

“How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans” (John 4:9).

She made it very plain that Jesus was and is a Jew “as touching his humanity.”

President Obama’s pastor is an intelligent and educated man. He knows these verses. Why then does he say that Jesus was a black man? The answer is simple. The “liberation theology” that Jeremiah Wright learned from “Black Liberation” theologian Dr. James H. Cone of Union Theological Seminary does not teach the Jesus of history. They teach that the Jesus of history is not important, in fact they believe that the Jesus of history is a myth. Thus, this “mythical” Jesus can be preached as a myth, as a fable. The “myth” of Jesus can be applied to different races, to liberate them from oppression. Hitler believed in a white, Aryan, non-Jewish Christ. He did not believe in the Jewish Christ of the Bible and history. The liberal “Three-Self” churches in China preach a Chinese Christ. The liberation theologians of the Hispanic world preach a brown Christ. And some of the liberal black churches preach a black Christ, as does Dr. Jeremiah Wright.

But the Bible itself does not teach a “mythical” Christ, who can be transformed into different racial modes of expression. The Jesus of Scripture and history was a real person, who actually lived in Israel, who was actually a Jew according to the flesh, who was actually crucified on a real cross to pay for the real sins of all mankind! That’s the Jesus proclaimed in the New Testament record.

“How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria?” (John 4:9).

“The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias [the Messiah] cometh, which is called Christ…” (John 4:25).

“Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he” (John 4:26).

Jesus is a Jew. Jesus is the Messiah. He is the Christ. He is the real Christ who really was born of a Jewish woman, who really died on the Cross and really shed His Blood, to atone for the sins of all mankind, to make possible the salvation of every race on this earth!

“Jesus Christ our Lord…made of the seed of David according to the flesh” (Romans 1:3).

“Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).

All hail the power of Jesus' name!
    Let angels prostrate fall! 
Bring forth the royal diadem,
    And crown Him Lord of all;
Bring forth the royal diadem,
    And crown Him Lord of all!

Let every kindred, every tribe,
   On this terrestrial ball,
To Him all majesty ascribe,
   And crown Him Lord of all;
To Him all majesty ascribe,
   And crown Him Lord of all.
(“All Hail the Power” by Edward Perronet, 1726-1792).

II. Second, Christ is declared to be the Son of God by His resurrection
from the dead.

Please read Romans 1:3-4 aloud.

“Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead” (Romans 1:3-4).

In its note on Romans 1:3, the 1599 Geneva Bible says,

Christ (who is the very substance and sum of the Gospel) is the only son of God the Father, who as touching his humanity, is made of the seed of David, but touching his divine and spiritual nature…is begotten of the Father from everlasting, as by his mighty resurrection manifestly appeareth (note on Romans 1:3).

He was "made" of the seed of David, but He was always the Son of God. Therefore, the text does not say He was “made” the Son of God, but rather “declared [marked off, pointed out, proven to be] the Son of God…by the resurrection from the dead” (Romans 1:4).

The resurrection of Christ’s body from the dead marks Him out, and proves Him to be, the only begotten Son of God. He rose from the grave. That's what points Him out, and declares Him to be, the eternal Son of God - His resurrection from the dead! That is the very foundation of the Christian faith.

“Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures” (I Corinthians 15:3-4).

“This Jesus [a Jew] hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses” (Acts 2:32).

“God hath made that same Jesus [a Jew], whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ” (Acts 2:36).

Dr. McGee said,

He is declared to be the Son of God “by the resurrection from the dead.” The resurrection proves everything. It is Resurrection that sets Him forth as the Son of God…He has come back from the dead in mighty power…resurrected and presently seated at the right hand of God in the heavens (J. Vernon McGee, Th.D., Thru the Bible, Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1983, volume IV, p. 647).

That is the real Christ! That is the God-man,

“Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead” (Romans 1:3-4).

Come to Jesus. Be washed clean from your sins by His Blood. Come to the Son of God and He will save you. “But,” someone says, “there is much to give up if I come to Him.” I would remind you of the words of that young missionary, Jim Elliot. He died as a martyr for Christ at the age of twenty-eight. And it was Jim Elliot who famously said, “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.” Come then and throw yourself, your life, your all – upon

“Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead” (Romans 1:3-4).

Let every kindred, every tribe,
   On this terrestrial ball,
To Him all majesty ascribe,
   And crown Him Lord of all;
To Him all majesty ascribe,
   And crown Him Lord of all.
(“All Hail the Power” by Edward Perronet, 1726-1792).

(END OF SERMON)
You can read Dr. Hymers' sermons each week on the Internet
at www.realconversion.com. Click on “Sermon Manuscripts.”

Prayer for President-Elect Obama and Scripture Read Before the Sermon
     by Dr. Kreighton L. Chan: I Timothy 2:1-3. 
Solo Sung Before the Sermon by Mr. Benjamin Kincaid Griffith:
“Nobody Loves You Like Jesus Does”
                                                     (as sung by George Beverly Shea, 1909-).


THE OUTLINE OF

WHAT DOES PRESIDENT OBAMA BELIEVE
ABOUT JESUS CHRIST?

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

“While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, Saying, What think ye of Christ? whose son is he? They say unto him, The Son of David” (Matthew 22:41-42).

(Matthew 24:24; Galatians 4:4-5; Romans 1:1-4)

I.   First, Christ physically is a descendant of David, and therefore a Jew,
not a black man, Romans 1:3; John 4:7, 9, 25, 26; Acts 4:12.

II.  Second, Christ is declared to be the Son of God by His resurrection
from the dead, Romans 1:3-4; I Corinthians 15:3-4; Acts 2:32, 36.