Conservatives have spent the last several years trying to cast doubt on President Obama's Christianity, often by suggesting he is a secret Muslim or claiming that he is a non-believer pretending to be Christian for political benefit. Sadly, their smear campaign has been effective - Pew reported last year that only 34 percent of Americans believe Obama is Christian (compared to nearly 18 percent who think he is Muslim.)
You might think it would be difficult for conservative smear merchants to continue to cast doubt on Obama's faith when he calls Jesus Christ "my lord and Savior," like he did at yesterday's annual National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, DC.. But, as "news" outlets like Fox Nation have shown time and again, they have absolutely no standards and are willing to manufacture scandals out of thin air when reality doesn't coincide with their chosen narrative.
If you visit Fox Nation right now, you are greeted by the following story on their front page:
If you follow the link, you are taken to a page on Fox Nation that claims Obama "misquoted a familiar Bible verse" during his address yesterday:
President Obama misquoted a familiar Bible verse during a faith-based address at the National Prayer Breakfast.
"Those who wait on the Lord will soar on wings like eagles, and they will run and not be weary, and they will walk and not faint," the president said during a speech to several thousand people at the breakfast.
But the actual passage, from Isaiah 40:31, states: "But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint."
Somewhat ironically, while Fox Nation appears to be positioning themselves as the arbiters of authentic Christianity, they seem unfamiliar with the fact that there is more than one version of the Bible.
This would be funny if it weren't so pathetic.
Most likely, they won't bother to correct their story, and their goal will be accomplished: the readers that trust them will remember the time Obama "misquoted" the Bible, some more people will question the authenticity of Obama's faith, and the smear machine will move on.
Some readers have correctly pointed out that while the New International Version is closer to what Obama said than the King James passage Fox Nation used is, Obama didn't quote word-for-word from the NIV either.
The NIV says: "but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint."
Other versions of the Bible are also pretty close to what Obama said.
Here's the Holman Christian Standard Bible, for example: "but those who trust in the LORD will renew their strength; they will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not faint."
So while Fox's criticism of Obama is still wrong, I should not have asserted that Obama was directly quoting from the NIV.