Michele Bachmann offered another of her “testimonies of faith” at an Iowa church Sunday, noting her desire to protect relations with Israel, the responsibilities parents have for educating their children and pledging to lead the nation in prayer if elected president during a follow-up question and answer period with Pastor Matt Floyd of Calvary Bible Church in Osceola.
Bachmann’s testimony differed little from others she has offered on Sunday mornings in Iowa churches throughout the campaign. Relying heavily on her her first decade of life in Iowa, and how the values she received as an Iowan influenced the remainder of her life, Bachmann tells the story of how she became religious — not just a church-goer, which she has been throughout her life, but how she came to accept the Christian faith as something that should be present in every aspect of her life.
“Even though I was doing nothing wrong — I wasn’t drinking, smoking or chasing boys — I still had a wicked heart,” Bachmann says of her 1972 teenage self before she and a group of three friends entered an abandoned and unlocked Minnesota church and stood before the alter confessing their sins.
“We got up. I walked home to our little apartment, and I bowed before my bed. I said to God, ‘All I know is that I’m a different person. … I will radically abandon my life to you, Lord,’ Bachmann said to those gathered in Osceola.
She added that 2 Corinthians 3:17 is her scripture, or the “scripture of my life.” That verse reads, “Now the Lord is that Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.”
Calvary Bible Church is an independent Bible Church that operations without a denomination, but in fellowship with Midwest Church Extension and IFCA International. It is one of a dozen churches throughout the state that operate in such a manner.
All member churches are required to agree with IFCA International’s doctrine. In part, that doctrine believes “man is totally depraved.” That is, the churches believe and preach that man was created in the image and likeness of God, but, due to original sin (Adam in the Garden of Eden), all people have inherited a sinful nature, are alienated from God and are unable “to remedy [their] lost condition” without turning to God. Bachmann spoke directly to this belief when stating that although she had personally done nothing wrong, she had “a wicked heart” that had not yet been turned over fully to God. Likewise, during her testimony, she notes that everyone is “born in sin,” a phrase which also follows this specific doctrine.
Additions to her earlier testimonies came during a subsequent question-and-answer period. The questions were offered by Floyd, senior pastor at Calvary Bible who endorsed Bachmann in August, and appeared to follow an ongoing series at the church entitled, “God’s Place in America’s Future.” Floyd first asked Bachmann if she, during the course of her duties as president, would be willing to lead the nation in prayer.
“I think that a president doesn’t lose their First Amendment right to freedom of speech and expression and religious worship and liberty,” Bachmann responded. “I would be most pleased to do that — to lead the nation in prayer. … I think it is time that people of faith stand up and not be fearful and stand for our faith because that’s one of the freedoms that our founders bled and died for to give to each one of us.”
Reminding those in attendance that she was not there to make a political speech, Bachmann noted that she has “been very concerned about the actions of the current president” toward Israel.
“I think it is absolutely vital that we support Israel,” she said.
“We are blessed as a nation — we know that was told to us in the Old Testament — we are blessed as a nation when we bless Israel; and also we need to be praying for the peace of Jerusalem.”
The third and final question from Floyd was regarding the education on children. Specifically, Floyd wanted to know, “who’s responsibility do you think it is to educate children and who gave them that responsibility?”
“The responsibility to educate children belongs to the parents. God has given children two parents and God has given that responsibility to parents,” Bachmann said.
Audio of the question and answer exchange between Floyd and Bachmann is included below.
The full event was recorded by C-SPAN, which anticipated airing its footage on television Sunday night. An exact time and channel can be found on the C-SPAN schedule.