Shortly after Sen. John McCain publicly rejected the endorsements of John Hagee and Rod Parsley, Parsley released his own statement rescinding his endorsement and then sort of disappeared from sight. Sometime since then, Parsley apparently decided that he had a bit more to get off his chest and so he released a video on his Center for Moral Clarity website in which he reiterated many of the points he made in his initial statement but added some attacks on what he claimed were the “politically vicious and misguided” hit-squads who exposed his radical views, claiming that his views on Islam are “very much in the mainstream” and insisting that he made a “clear distinction between Muslim terrorists and the vast majority of peaceful Muslims.”
Of course, Parsley is on record having told his congregation and massive TV audience that “America was founded in part with the intention of seeing this false religion [Islam] destroyed” and “Islam is an anti-Christ religion that intends through violence to conquer the world,” as well as writing that so-called “Muslim extremists” are really “mainstream believers who are drawing from the well at the very heart of Islam.”
Video and transcript:
I’d like to take a few moments and respond to the recent media reports regarding my statements in the book “Silent No More” about Islam. It doesn’t surprise me that, as I continue to engage the culture with a thoroughly Biblical worldview that political hit-squads have begun to describe some of my views in the most ominous and extreme terms. I expected that opponents of that worldview would try to make a connection between myself and the extreme views of other ministers such as the Rev. Jeremiah Wright. This is what we’ve seen play out over the past few days. Certainly, I’m disappointed with those in the media who have misrepresented my views for political gain and who have lied in pursuit of political power. It’s a sad moment in American politics; one of the many in the recent election cycle.
My views on Islam, which have come under such scrutiny and misrepresentation, are very much in the mainstream. Anyone who has read the entire chapter on Islam in my book “Silent No More” understands that what I have said is echoed from the White House to the State Department, from leading universities to the pulpits of our nation. I believe that radical Islam is one of the greatest threats to Western civilization and that conflict has roots in our American history. I have always, and I will continue, to make a clear distinction between Muslim terrorists and the vast majority of peaceful Muslims who are appalled at the bloody results of suicide bombers and mass murders. Once again, I unapologetically denounce those who spread death in the name of Allah while I continue to believe peace-loving Muslims need the full of all Christians, and Christians must provide understanding, cooperation, and friendship to peace-loving Muslims throughout the world who share our desire for democracy and peace.
I understand that the raw truth of the pulpit cannot survive untempered in the political sphere. Still, I believe that clergy of all faiths should be able to speak into the lives of our political leaders without every doctrine and statement of those religious leaders being transformed into political weapons by the politically vicious and misguided.