It was only to be expected, I suppose, that conservatism would come up with its own messianic figure to oppose the alleged liberal messiah, Barack Obama. Conservatives loved to taunt liberals and progressives about “their” messiah. But now they have one of their own. Well, a new one of their own.
Remember when Newt Gingrich was messiah of sorts? And Michele Bachmann actually asked God to anoint her campaign? Of course, Sarah Palin was an Mama Grizzly almost-hunter-grrl-messiah on her show, Sarah Palin’s Alaska, and Rick Santorum gets honorable messiah mention.
When Ted Cruz heads down to join other Religious Right leaders at David Lane’s Renewal Project conference in South Carolina, he will do so as conservatism’s newly anointed messiah. At that point he will have replaced Sarah Palin, who, you might remember, was anointed as Esther before going off to do battle with Barack Obama for the soul of America.
The problem for America is that Cruz is both slicker and smarter than Sarah Palin. And like Sarah Palin, his messianic bona fides are in good order. It was in the news recently that Ted Cruz’s father, Rafael, anointed his son on August 26, 2012 at New Beginnings megachurch in Irving, Texas:
As Huffington Post reported earlier this month, “It turns out that Ted’s father, Rafael Cruz, is a pastor with Texas charismatic ministry Purifying Fire International who has been campaigning against Obamacare the last several months.”
According to New Beginnings’ dominionist pastor, Larry Huch, Ted Cruz got elected to the senate because God is about to begin his “rule and reign” and there will be a big “end-time transfer of wealth.” Somehow, transfering wealth is a good thing when the money is being taken from non-believers and awarded the church but bad if rich folks and corporations are expected to pay their way.
It is no coincidence that those rich folks and corporations are big supporters of people like Ted Cruz.
God chose Ted Cruz and he is now apparently selecting his bankers. As HuffPo explains the results, they seem to have very little to do with anything Jesus preached about wealth, even though a weaponized Jesus figures prominently in dominionist plans:
So to pull all this logic together, God anoints priests to work in the church directly and kings to go out into the marketplace to conquer, plunder, and bring back the spoils to the church. The reason governmental regulation has to disappear from the marketplace is to make it completely available to the plunder of Christian “kings” who will accomplish the “end time transfer of wealth.” Then “God’s bankers” will usher in the “coming of the messiah.” The government is being shut down so that God’s bankers can bring Jesus back.
Talk to Action reported a few days later that Ted Cruz had actually been anointed as messiah (in Iowa, of course) on June 19, 2013 “by pastors who claim the Constitution is based on the Old Testament, appear to endorse biblical slavery, depict gay marriage as a socialist plot against the traditional family, and call for a Christian war on secular society.”
One of those pastors was David Lane, whose conference in South Carolina Cruz will now attend, who, Talk to Action reminds us, is in turn is a creature of the American Family Association. The New Civil Rights Movement reports that Lane wrote a column at World Net Daily calling for a “war to restore a Christian America” (it has since been removed).
At the anointing this prayer was offered over Cruz:
Father, we believe that, indeed, no weapon formed against him will prosper, and every tongue that rises up against him in judgment will be condemned – for this is the heritage of the servant of the Lord. And his righteousness is of you, Lord. Fahter, you have said that, and we believe that today. Father, we ask today that you would give him the tongue of the learned to speak that word. Father, we ask that your blessing would come upon our nation. Father, those like our senator, father, that they would receive these words.
Christian Broadcasting Network’s David Brody calls Cruz’s political career “a thing of God” when he interviewed Rafael in America’s Galilee, Iowa, and what Rafael had to say in answer reveals to America why Cruz acts like he does:
Rafael Cruz: Yes, but you know something, it is not something that started a couple of years ago. Let me just go back to when he was maybe four. When he was four I used to read Bible stories to him all the time. And I would declare and proclaim the word of God over him. And I would just say, ‘You know Ted, you have been gifted above any man that I know and God has destined you for greatness’. And I started making declarations about the Word of God to him every day. When he was eight years old I was very active in an organization called the Religious Roundtable.
Ian Reifowitz at Daily Kos writes that Ted Cruz always thinks he’s the smartest guy in the room and GQ’s Jason Zengerle wrote that Cruz “has come to the reluctant but unavoidable conclusion that he is simply more intelligent, more principled, more right—in both senses of the word—than pretty much everyone else in our nation’s capital.”
But it is more than that. Cruz didn’t get his arrogance simply by being a Harvard man. In all likelihood, Cruz actually thinks he is the anointed messiah. The Religious Right leaders who are not simply using him to further their own agenda think he is the anointed messiah. The base sure acts like they think he is the messiah just as they once thought Sarah Palin and Michele Bachmann and others have been anointed messiahs.
The Religious Right needs a messiah because their weaponized Jesus is just a name for them. Jesus, who is every other Christian’s messiah, can’t be their messiah because Jesus reviled the wrong people: the rich, not the poor. Jesus’ transfer of wealth therefore came at the problem of wealth from the wrong direction, from rich to poor.
That is not at all what Cruz & Co. have in mind. Liberals and progressives might laugh at what they see as a bunch of mystical mumbo jumbo, but they would do well to realize that Ted Cruz and his fellow heretics who pack those megachurches every Sunday are deadly serious.
Come February, realize that the government shut down is just a small part of the overall end-times picture. Worried about that $24 billion Ted Cruz owes us? Don’t be. It’s just the tip of the ice berg because when the time comes, Cruz & Co. expect not only to be sitting on top, but to get rich as a result.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.