- (Photo: Reuters/Peter Macdiarmid)
U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron has admitted that some of Christ's teachings are more difficult to follow than others, such as the one about giving all of one's possessions to the poor, but he insisted that many Biblical teaching are applicable to daily life.
"I'm a Christian and I'm an active member of the Church of England, and like all Christians I think I sometimes struggle with some of the sayings and some of the instructions," Cameron said at a question-and-answer session near Blackburn, The Daily Mail reported.
The PM was specifically asked: "What would your response to Jesus be on his instruction to us to sell all our possessions and give the proceeds to the poor?"
The question seemingly refers to Mark 10 as found in the Bible, where a man asks Jesus what he needs to do to gain eternal life, and Christ tells him: "Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me," an instruction that the man finds difficult to follow.
Cameron admitted that he had never been asked such a question before, and said that the teaching would be "a little bit difficult" for him to follow.
The leader of the Conservative Party insisted, however, that the Bible is "not a bad handbook" for life.
"But what I think is so good about Jesus's teachings is there are lots of things that he said that you can still apply very directly to daily life and to bringing up your children," he continued.
"Simple things like do to others as you would be done by; love your neighbor as yourself, the Ten Commandments, the Sermon on the Mount."
The PM clarified, however, that he is not suggesting that religion "is like a pick and mix and you can pick the bits you like."
Cameron has said on a number of occasions that he is a practicing Christian and a member of the Church of England, but his politics have caused some conservative members to question how sincere he really is about his beliefs.
The U.K. leader stood firmly behind the new same-sex marriage law that was passed earlier this summer and signed by Queen Elizabeth II, despite opposition from the Anglican Communion.
And earlier this year, Cameron was accused by the former Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey of harming Christian interests with his support for same-sex marriage and other issues.
"It was a bit rich to hear that the Prime Minister has told religious leaders that they should 'stand up and oppose aggressive secularization' when it seems that his government is aiding and abetting this aggression every step of the way," Lord Carey wrote in an article.
"At his pre-Easter Downing Street reception for faith leaders, he said that he supported Christians' right to practice their faith. Yet many Christians doubt his sincerity."