Gohmert Uses House Hearing To Debate Whether Non-Christians ‘Go To Hell’ (VIDEO)

ASSOCIATED PRESS

Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) on Tuesday repeatedly confronted a faith leader — who also happens to be a noted church-state separatist — about his Christian beliefs during a House Judiciary Committee hearing on religious freedom.

“Do you believe in sharing the good news that will keep people from going to hell, consistent with the Christian beliefs?” Gohmert asked Rev. Barry Lynn, executive director for Americans United for the Separation of Church and State.

Lynn responded that he wouldn’t agree with Gohmert’s “construction of what hell is like or why one gets there.” When Gohmert pressed him to say whether he believed people “would go to hell if they do not believe Jesus is the way,” Lynn again answered that he thinks failing to ascribe to a certain set of Christian beliefs doesn’t necessarily doom a person to hell.

“No, not a set of ideas,” Gohmert insisted. “Either you believe as a Christian that Jesus is the way, the truth, or life, or you don’t.”

“Congressman, what I believe is not necessarily what I think ought to justify the creation of public policy for everybody,” Lynn countered. “For the 2,000 different religions that exist in this country, the 25 million non-believers. I’ve never been offended. I’ve never been ashamed to share my belief.”

Lynn then recounted how he spoke recently at an American Athiests conference, where he said he made it clear that he was a Christian minister even though he was in attendance to talk about the Constitution. Gohmert apparently took that response as support for Christianity a la carte.

“So, the Christian belief as you see it is whatever you choose to think about Christ, whether or not you believe those words he said that nobody basically ‘goes to heaven except through me,’” he concluded.

Watch below, via Raw Story:

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Catherine Thompson is a senior editor for Talking Points Memo in New York City. She came to the site in 2013 and reported on national affairs. Previously, she worked as a research assistant to investigative reporter Wayne Barrett. She can be reached at catherine@talkingpointsmemo.com.
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