Obery Hendricks, Ph.D., teaches Religion and African American Studies at Columbia University. He is the author of The Politics of Jesus: Reclaiming the True Revolutionary Nature of Jesus’ Teachings and How They Have Been Corrupted.

Posts By This Author

The Biblical Values of Ocasio-Cortez's Democratic Socialism

by Obery M. Hendricks Jr. 01-30-2019

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) walks after a ceremonial swearing-in picture in Washington, D.C. Jan. 3, 2019. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts

Virtually from the day she assumed office, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and her avowed democratic socialism have been under attack. Much of the condemnation is from the same crowd that so vigorously insists that America is and always has been a “Christian nation.” This is quite ironic, because democratic socialism and the Bible share a strikingly similar vision of what constitutes a fair and just society. Capitalism, however, does not share that vision.

What Michelle Obama's 'Becoming' Misses About Jeremiah Wright

by Obery M. Hendricks Jr. 01-23-2019

Jeremiah Wright (behind the I.V. pole) as a Navy Corpsman Tending to President Lyndon B. Johnson. A letter of thanks on behalf of the President is superimposed on photo. Public Domain.

The former First Lady of the United States, Michelle Obama, recently published Becoming, a remarkable memoir that is the best-selling book of the season. I greatly enjoyed the book, but I admit that I am very troubled by her description of Jeremiah Wright as a wild-eyed, out of touch extremist who is “paranoid” and “careening through callous and inappropriate rage … at white America.” I don’t question the sincerity of her opinion, but as a long-time friend and admirer of Wright, I see him quite differently.

Devils in the Details: Robertson's Revision of Haitian History

by Obery M. Hendricks Jr. 01-18-2010

Whether or not Robertson had malicious intentions when he declared that Haiti's tragic history was the result of a "pact with the devil" made by early leaders of the revolt against their French col

Dick Cheney's Contempt for Americans

by Obery M. Hendricks Jr. 05-20-2009

Dick Cheney is a strange creature. For public consumption he is the cool, principled champion of the American people willing to take hard public stands on their behalf.

A New Christian Manifesto: "Follow Me" (Part 2s)

by Obery M. Hendricks Jr. 09-05-2008

[continued from part 1]

Jesus did not establish bureaucratic institutions, weekly social gatherings, or houses of religious entertainment. He started a movement that demands that rather than spending our time establishing ever more luxurious churches, we must strive to establish God's kingdom of love and justice on earth as in heaven. The gospel he lived and died for summons us to treat [...]

A New Christian Manifesto: "Follow Me" (Part 1)

by Obery M. Hendricks Jr. 09-04-2008

The most direct self-referential command Jesus has given to those who would call themselves by his name is, "Follow me." That means that even before praising Jesus, we must follow him on his path of love. It is that path that led him to teach, to heal, to save, to sacrifice. Yet his path did not stop there. It also led him to fulfill the prophet's mandate to call to account the shepherds of his people who seemed to care more for power and wealth than for the welfare of the sheep they were [...]

The Truth About Obama's Faith

by Obery M. Hendricks Jr. 01-28-2008


Everyday there seems to be some new outrageous charge leveled at Barack Obama. One of the most pernicious is that he is a Muslim who is dishonestly masquerading as a Christian. This charge is so malicious - and so untrue - that it is time to set the record straight.


Barack Obama has never been a Muslim. He has never attended a Muslim school. From about age eight to age nine Obama lived in Indonesia, the most populous Muslim country on earth, with more Muslim schools than one can [...]


Thank the Lord and Pass the Patriotism?

by Obery M. Hendricks Jr. 11-21-2007


In many pulpits during this Thanksgiving season, love of our country and pride in our citizenship will be pronounced in the same breath - and often with the same intensity - as declarations of love for our God. But we must be careful, for patriotism can be destructive as well as constructive. Worse, it can become idolatrous.


Constructive patriotism, or what James Forbes, pastor [...]


'The Survival of the Fittest'

by Obery M. Hendricks Jr. 12-01-2006

Jesus was a political revolutionary—not the meek figure he is commonly portrayed as—whose teachings have been diluted, if not corrupted, by those in positions of power, writes Obery Hen