He Cannot Say No


Andrea got me the American Experience DVD set on The Presidents last Christmas and we watch a little bit at a time.

One of the chapters in the documentary on JFK relates  Kennedy’s bold womanizing.  Sometimes he would leave his wife Jackie at party to go off with another woman.

In an interview a close acquaintance recalled once asking Kennedy – “Jack, when you’re straining every gasket to be elected president, why do you endanger yourself by going out with women,” I think I just put it like that.  And he said… he looked at me a long second and he said, “Because, I just can’t help it.”

The chapter closes with biographer Nigel Hamilton assessing Kennedy – “He cannot say no.”

Such moral foibles should not elicit our self-righteous judgment, but compassion.  Kennedy’s drive, expressed for him (among other ways) in his sexual recklessness illustrates our natural slavery to sin (cf. Jn. 8:34).  He, along with us, need the liberating grace of the gospel.

And as Titus 2:11-12 says, “The grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men.  It teaches us to say ‘No’ to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age.”


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