During a 2008 debate with Jay Sekulow of the American Center of Law and Justice, who endorsed Mitt Romney’s last presidential bid, Robert Jeffress said that not only are Mormons like Romney not Christians but that America would suffer God’s judgment if a Mormon were elected President.
Jeffress, an influential pastor in the Southern Baptist Convention, stepped into the political spotlight when he introduced Rick Perry at the Values Voter Summit in a speech that appeared to contrast the fight between Perry and Romney as a choice between a Christian conservative and a conservative who is simply a “moral person.” Jeffress believes that Romney is not “indwelt by the Holy Spirit of God” but actually is a member of a “cult” that is “from the pit of Hell.” He also contends that “counterfeit religions,” including Roman Catholicism, represent “the genius of Satan.”
At the 2008 debate, arguing that Christians are “indwelt by the Holy Spirit of God” and “uniquely favored by God,” and therefore favored in public office, Jeffress said that Mormons, along with Hindus and Muslims, “are following after false gods.” Jeffress warned that “God always judges a nation that has a ruler who introduces false gods into that national life.”
The value of electing a Christian goes beyond the public policies that he or she may enact. We believe that a genuine Christian has a relationship with God, is indwelt by the Holy Spirit of God, is led by the spirit of God, and is uniquely favored by God. Even if that genuine believer does not embrace every position we hold important we still believe that we make a grave mistake in underestimating the value of having a Christian in office.
Followers of Mormonism, Hinduism, Islam, they’re not worshiping the same God in a different way. We believe they are following after false gods. And as Christians, we can look at the Bible and see very clearly that God always judges a nation that has a ruler who introduces false gods into that national life.