at least long past the purges. Oh, and Arafat, too; God must have been a big fan. Pat Robertson seems to be telling us that Sharon's stroke -- and Rabin's assassination -- is God's punishment for "dividing God's land" (since it earned him God's "enmity"). Now if this is God's standard operating procedure, then I take it that the absence of divine punishment is something of an endorsement. God didn't send Stalin a stroke during the purges or the Ukraine famine, so Stalin must not have really earned God's enmity. God didn't get rid of Arafat for a very long time. Sharon must have been a much worse fellow than those worthies, in God's eyes.
Of course, even if one thinks that God intervenes in world affairs in such a direct way, one could say that God moves in mysterious ways, and that his failure to send Stalin a prompt stroke is no endorsement. (I'm sure many readers of this blog would take this view, and I have no quarrel with them.) But if God's ways in not killing Stalin and Arafat promptly are a mystery, then I take it that the Sharon stroke is hardly an obvious condemnation, either.
Yet Robertson doesn't seem to think that God's ways are so mysterious -- Sharon suffers a stroke, that's God's hand. So given that Arafat and Stalin lived long and apparently quite prosperous lives, way past the time that I had thought they'd earned God's "enmity," that must be God's hand, too, at least given Robertson's view. God is either a funny sort of God, or he's got a funny sort of servant.
Thanks to Shawn Wesson (Bareknucklepolitics.com) for the pointer.