Stephen Barr on John Edwards

Deep Thoughts from Senator Edwards

By Stephen Barr

Thursday, March 15, 2007, 10:09 AM

Senator John Edwards has offered us a reflection that gives us a glimpse of his hidden theological depths: “I think that Jesus would be disappointed in our ignoring the plight of those around us who are suffering and our focus on our own selfish short-term needs. I think he would be appalled, actually.”

“WOULD be”? Would be as in “he would be, if he knew about it”? There is a very false note here. A Christian who prays naturally thinks of Christ as ever-present and all-knowing, not as a figure from the past who would doubtless have something interesting to say if he were still alive, or who would have definite opinions of certain matters were they called to his attention. On the other hand, at least Senator Edwards didn’t say that Jesus would be turning over in his grave.

Stephen M. Barr is a theoretical particle physicist at the Bartol Research Institute of the University of Delaware and the author of Modern Physics and Ancient Faith and A Student’s Guide to Natural Science.