On July 20, 2008, the pastor of Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin’s home church, Larry Kroon, delivered a sermon called “Sin Is Personal To God.” Kroon, the senior pastor of the non-denominational Wasilla Bible Church in Wasilla, Alaska, used the book of Zephanaiah as his reference point for discussing “that great day of the Lord when God will finally bring closure to human history… a day of wrath.” According to Kroon, “all things and all people” are going to bear the brunt of God’s “intense anger.” “There’s anger with God,” he proclaimed. “He takes sin personal.”
Kroon placed Zephaniah in a modern context, warning that the sinful habits of Americans would invite the wrath of God. “And if Zephaniah were here today,” Kroon bellowed, “he’d be saying, ‘Listen, [God] is gonna deal with all the inhabitants of the earth. He is gonna strike out His hand against, yes, Wasilla; and Alaska; and the United States of America. There’s no exceptions here — there’s none. It’s all.’”
While Kroon has cautioned his parishioners against the mass marketed End Times prophecies of Hal Lindsey and Tim LaHaye, he has nonetheless invoked doomsday scenarios that mirror those on the pages of Lindsey and LaHaye’s bestselling tracts.
“It’s so very possible that God, instead of responding by granting spiritual renewal and sustained prosperity,” Kroon said in a sermon on July 13, 2008, “could just as easily…it’s conceivable that He could just as easily, for example, raise up a revived, prosperous and powerful Communist Russia with a web of alliances across the Middle East. And our gas pumps would go dry. The dollar would collapse. And the markets would crash. The kayak could go upside down. And it could happen in a matter of weeks. That could happen. It could happen by this fall.”
Palin joined Wasilla Bible Church after leaving Wasilla Assembly of God, a Pentecostal church where she delivered a controversial sermon asking her audience to pray that the war in Iraq is “God’s plan.” When she is working in Alaska’s capitol, she worships at the Juneau Christian Center, another Pentecostal church where charismatic displays like speaking in tongues and dancing in the spirit are encouraged. Palin describes herself as a “Bible-believing Christian.”
Palin’s presence at Wasilla Bible Church has not been confirmed for the days Kroon warned of God “striking out his hand against… the United States of America” and “rais[ing] up” an alliance of nations to ruin America.