July 21, 2019

The deep, deep evangelical support for Donald Trump is something I will never understand.

How can you look at a man who gleefully violates at least four or five commandments daily, and is so unfamiliar with the Bible that he refers to his "favorite" verse as being from "Two Corinthians"? I can't think of a single one of Jesus' teachings that Donald Trump follows. In fact, I'm sure that if Jesus did return right now, Donald Trump would refuse the radical Middle Eastern carpenter-turned-rabbi entry into the country, for being too brown and too socialistic to merit even asylum status.


And yet, the evangelical community appears to have gone all in on Donald Trump. Some of it is undoubtedly following leaders like Jerry Falwell, Jr., who has his own reasons for supporting Trump. Some of it has to do with the notion that the evangelical (white) community feels it is losing its grip on the culture wars (an interesting podcast on this is courtesy of The Ezra Klein show)

But former Reagan adviser Peter Wehner, himself an evangelical Christian and a Never Trumper, thinks this blind devotion to Trump is hurting Christianity itself.

There’s a very high cost to our politics for celebrating the Trump style, but what is most personally painful to me as a person of the Christian faith is the cost to the Christian witness. Nonchalantly jettisoning the ethic of Jesus in favor of a political leader who embraces the ethic of Thrasymachus and Nietzsche—might makes right, the strong should rule over the weak, justice has no intrinsic worth, moral values are socially constructed and subjective—is troubling enough.

But there is also the undeniable hypocrisy of people who once made moral character, and especially sexual fidelity, central to their political calculus and who are now embracing a man of boundless corruptions.
...[E]vangelical Christians should acknowledge the profound damage that’s being done to their movement by its braided political relationship—its love affair, to bring us back to the words of Ralph Reed—with a president who is an ethical and moral wreck. Until that is undone—until followers of Jesus are once again willing to speak truth to power rather than act like court pastors—the crisis in American Christianity will only deepen, its public testimony only dim, its effort to be a healing agent in a broken world only weaken.


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