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Sunday, May 17, 2009 

He Was WHAT? He Was Born Again? Really?

The missus and I were watching the evening news on Friday and as is our custom we had the dial turned to ABC. George Stephanopoulos was filling in for Charlie Gibson who was who knows where and taking the night off.

Stephanopoulos was reporting on Pope Benedict XVI visiting the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and informed all of Christianity that this holy site is where Jesus died, was buried, and…are you sitting down… “where Jesus was born again”.

My missus caught the stupidest thing said in recent memory by someone who claims to be a journalist and nearly jumped off the couch. Normally she tries to not pay attention to the evening news but Stephanopoulos’ faux pas had her sitting up and yelling “what did he just say?” Trying to put the best possible construction on the situation she asked if maybe he simply misspoke.

No, he didn’t just misspeak. When Stephanopoulos guest hosts, he reads off the same teleprompter that any other guest reads off, just like Charlie Gibson does when he’s in front of the camera. No, he didn’t misspeak, he read exactly what was written, and that right there is the problem.

Now, maybe it’s possible that Stephanopoulos didn’t review what he had to read on Friday night but I somehow doubt that. Even if he didn’t have a chance to read his script, someone had to! It is almost beyond belief, that while covering a story that has been as tumultuous as Benedicts’ visit to Israel has been, that a religion expert not be consulted so that ABC could report correctly even the basic understanding of what Christianity has confessed for two thousand years.

Who the heck refers to the resurrection of Christ as Him being “born again”? For crying out loud even the four year olds in our Sunday school program know the difference between resurrection and being born again! Whoever wrote the story has as much understanding of the basics of Christianity as I do of Kryptonian war suits.

Well, this had me on a rant for most of the rest of the night that went like this:

"So, I guess Jesus was born again after He accepted Himself into His heart, after He made that decision to have a personal relationship with Himself? Maybe then He was born again, right? Uh, how did he get by without saying the sinners prayer? Could He be born again if He didn't say the sinners prayer"

Thankfully I was able to calm down before our Friday night Bible study…somewhat, I do after all have a tendency to get a fixated on something that bugs me… like not knowing Jesus 101 for instance.

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Ummm...uh...it might have been a little more understandable if they were at the Jordan river...baptized, born again, you know.

But he was born again where he DIED?


no doubt. The lesson in this is two-fold:

1. Proofread twice, speak once.

2. Know what you're talking about.

I wouldn't describe Jesus as having been "born again" at his Baptism, either, though that's a more accurate picture of the term.

Y'think it might-could've counted as a critical event?

well, there was certainly a response...no if, and, or buts about it.

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  • I'm Frank Gillespie
  • From The Haut South
  • Confessional Lutheran
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