Wednesday, July 10, 2019

The Deepening Crisis in Evangelical Christianity
Many white evangelical Christians, then, are deeply fearful of what a Trump loss would mean for America, American culture, and American Christianity. If a Democrat is elected president, they believe, it might all come crashing down around us. During the 2016 election, for example, the influential evangelical author and radio talk-show host Eric Metaxas said, “In all of our years, we faced all kinds of struggles. The only time we faced an existential struggle like this was in the Civil War and in the Revolution when the nation began … We are on the verge of losing it as we could have lost it in the Civil War.” A friend of mine described that outlook to me this way: “It’s the Flight 93 election. FOREVER.”

Many evangelical Christians are also filled with grievances and resentments because they feel they have been mocked, scorned, and dishonored by the elite culture over the years. (Some of those feelings are understandable and warranted.) For them, Trump is a man who will not only push their agenda on issues such as the courts and abortion; he will be ruthless against those they view as threats to all they know and love. For a growing number of evangelicals, Trump’s dehumanizing tactics and cruelty aren’t a bug; they are a feature. Trump “owns the libs,” and they love it. He’ll bring a Glock to a cultural knife fight, and they relish that.

Jerry Falwell Jr., the president of Liberty University, one of the largest Christian universities in the world, put it this way: “Conservatives & Christians need to stop electing ‘nice guys.’ They might make great Christian leaders but the United States needs street fighters like @realDonaldTrump at every level of government b/c the liberal fascists Dems are playing for keeps & many Repub leaders are a bunch of wimps!”

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. Don’t forget: Trump was essentially named an unindicted co-conspirator (“Individual 1”) in a scheme to make hush-money payments to a porn star who alleged she’d had an affair with him while he was married to his third wife, who had just given birth to their son.


  1. New low for this blog in its unrelenting campaign against all things Trump. Featuring a writer who appeals to something that many worship in a way that would be Avoda Zara if a Jew did it.

  2. To what extent does this concern apply to those Orthodox Jews who support Trump? Do we lose any credibility as a kingdom of priests and a light to the nations by supporting someone who shows no compassion to the orphan, the widow, or the stranger? Alas, I think to ask the question is to answer it - those who support Trump find the particularist aspects of Yiddishkeit of more importance than the universalist ones.

  3. Who was I attacking personally? The author of the article? That was my intent.

    I did not say or mean to imply that Blog owner was in any way involved in nor advocating Avoda Zara.

    I just felt that the source of support was suspect and that in my opinion it reflected poorly on the blog, even more than the ususl constant barrage against our esteemed President.

    My apology if my comment was in poor taste, or worse. Should I delete my comment?

  4. no need t delete

    article was just pointing out that people claiming moral principles are important support trump even though his actions are inconsistent with the principles

  5. Understood. Politics breeds hypocrisy. I'm aware of that. Personally, as much as I lionize Donald Trump, I have no desire to actually meet him in person.

  6. I just get a kick out of his managing to keep the spotlight on himself all the time. That meeting with Kim Jong-un in North Korea was breathtaking.

  7. Kalonymus AnonymusJuly 10, 2019 at 11:39 PM

    more relevant to us

    also, tragedy, patrilineal Jewish on both sides, but neither matrilineal


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