Like other prominent politicians, Florida Senator Marco Rubio is under a constant spotlight. However, this reality doesn’t preclude him from sharing his strong Christian faith with others. In fact, he regularly tweets Bible verses.
Unfortunately, this practice has irked several atheist and left-leaning organizations including the Freedom From Religion Foundation, also known as FFRF. On October 18, 2017, Rubio was asked about his Bible tweets during an interview with CBN News. Despite the recent opposition to his Twitter activity, Rubio stated, “I’ll continue to do it.”
“Twitter’s voluntary,” he went on to say. “People sign up to follow me on Twitter. If they don’t like it, they don’t have to follow me.”
Freedom from Religion Foundation’s Objections
The FFRF sent Rubio a letter in August demanding the junior Senator to either stop tweeting anything regarding his Christian faith, or remove all remnants of his public office from his social media accounts.
The group feels Rubio’s tweets represent government speech. Along with a list of his past Bible tweets, the Wisconsin-based atheist organization interestingly urged Rubio to read Matthew 6:5-6. These verses state, “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”
The FFRF also accused Rubio of violating the Establishment Clause of the U.S Constitution, and asserted Rubio’s Twitter account is frequently utilized as a vehicle to send political messages. Because the page is used as a platform for political communication, the FFRF argued the Bible tweets act as endorsements of Christianity. The atheist organization insisted they’d received complaints about Rubio’s Bible tweets from numerous concerned citizens including Floridians, and made sure to remind him they have a base of 1,400 members in Florida along with a state chapter who are all opposed to the tweets.
Rick Esenberg, the President of the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty, doesn’t feel the FFRF has any legal authority to imply government officials can’t freely express their personal religious convictions. During an interview with the Washington Examiner, Esenberg cited the long American tradition of public officials sharing their faith including President Abraham Lincoln. President Barack Obama also talked about the power of God’s grace during his eulogy of Rev. Clementa Pinckney after the fatal shooting of nine attendees of the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina. Following his poignant eulogy, Obama led the congregation in the well-known Christian song “Amazing Grace.”
Heeding the Great Commission
Besides desiring to share his Christian faith with others, Rubio feels Scripture compels him to do so.
During his interview with CBN News, Rubio referred to the Great Commission found in Matthew 28:19-20. These verses say, “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
The recent Bible tweets certainly weren’t the first instances of Rubio sharing his Christian faith with the world. When he was running for President in 2016, an elderly man collapsed at one of his campaign events in South Carolina. When he became aware of the situation, Rubio immediately stopped the event in order to personally pray for the ailing attendee.
On the campaign trail, the Senator regularly played Christian music at his rallies. One of the songs frequently used was “Greater” by Mercy Me. For Rubio, his faith is too important to stop sharing with others. He’s referred to it as “the single greatest influence in my life.”
A Life of Faith
Rubio’s journey to Christian faith has been a diverse one. His parents baptized him in the Roman Catholic Church as an infant. After Rubio’s family moved to Nevada when he was young, he attended Mormon services with his mother.
At age 13, Rubio’s parents moved the family back to Florida. At the time, he began attending catholic services again. In recent years, Rubio has frequented a protestant church with his wife and children on Saturdays while going to catholic services on Sundays.
~ 1776 Christian