Was Gorbachev a Closet Christian?

CNSNews.com | Kevin Mooney | June 21, 2007

(CNSNews.com) – Despite his publicly professed atheism, Mikhail Gorbachev displayed signs of religious belief, and President Ronald Reagan often wondered whether the Soviet Union’s last leader was a “closet Christian,” a political scientist said Wednesday.

“I think he believes,” the 40th president had said to at least one close aide, Paul Kengor of Grove City College told Cybercast News Service in an interview.

While Gorbachev clearly resisted the collapse of the Berlin Wall and the Soviet Union, he did nevertheless acquiesce to those developments taking place peacefully, Kengor observed.

He said it was difficult to determine with any degree of certainty whether Gorbachev had done so as a result of hidden Christian convictions, or because he simply saw and accepted the inevitable.

Kengor Wednesday delivered a speech in Washington, D.C., on the significance of Reagan’s “tear down this wall” speech, delivered in divided Berlin 20 years ago this month.

For Reagan’s part, Kengor said, the late president’s “total revulsion of communism” could best be understood in the context of his own strong Christian convictions.

He said Reagan’s religious convictions often drove him to denounce the Soviet Union in stark moral terms – such as the use of the term “evil empire” during his 1983 speech to evangelicals in Orlando, Florida.

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