I felt dismayed at the large number of self-identified evangelicals who voted for Trump in the South Carolina Republican primary. If there was any incredulity or surprise in my reaction I think it was because I’d hoped the church at large was healthier than what I’d seen over the past few years.
The argument that we’re not voting for a national pastor holds no water with me. Christians should know the many warnings in the Bible about what happens to nations when their rulers are wicked men. And there is no other way to describe Donald Trump.
Despite whatever religious claims he makes, the fact is that Donald Trump is unrepentant and has seen no need to ask God for forgiveness for his adulterous affairs, his casinos and strip clubs, his abandonment of family members in distress, his financial stiffing of businesses, his slander and ongoing lies about anyone who crosses him, and his own denial and lies about statements he’s made the day or even a few minutes before, such as his ongoing waffling about Planned Parenthood. He has profited from vices that Christians denounce and has supported those bent upon the destruction of the family.
Why would Christians vote for a man for their presidential candidate when he has neither the necessary wisdom nor temperament to make responsible, mature decisions that will directly affect their lives? Anger at Congress or fear of life’s circumstances are not motivations for voting.
I’ve known anger, and I’ve known fear. Christians should be helping other Christians to overcome these things, to learn to trust in God, and to lend a hand of hope and help, and heart of love to those in difficult and dire life circumstances—not turn to the proud and to the liars who channel anger or promise better lives. They are no saviors.
When self-identified evangelicals (I’m using the qualifier deliberately. The Bible is clear there will always be wolves among the sheep, and I’m guessing the group was a mix.) sow the wind by voting for Trump, they will reap the whirlwind not only for themselves, but for many, many people.
In commenting on the wind and whirlwind verse in Hosea, Derek Kidner wrote the whirlwind is not “simply negative: ‘Put nothing in and you’ll get nothing out.’ Instead the harvest is positive disaster.” Keil and Delitzsch state the word is a “figurative representation…of disaster.” And J. B. Hindley noted that the Septuagint translated the Hebrew into Greek with the word, katastrophé.
Hyperbole? Overreaction? Not when you consider Trump has no moral clarity and will not take a stand to defend life or marriage and the family. His promises have no credibility whatsoever when he changes his mind from hour to hour, not even knowing himself what is in his head. Christians have already had their businesses and livelihoods threatened when they have lived out their Christian beliefs on marriage. Do you really think Trump has the slightest understanding of religious liberty?
Christians, you are pulling your own house down. You are helping start events into motion that will invite persecution of you, your fellow believers, and bring sorrow to so very many.
Learn and discern. Do not be taken in by a speech promising revenge or soaring rhetoric that has no substance. Who are you voting for? And why?
At the bottom of this blog is a translation of an inscription on the monument on the grave of William Bradford, governor of Plymouth Colony:
What our fathers with so much difficulty secured,
do not basely relinquish
Christians, your fellow believers toiled, suffered, and died as they brought our nation into being. Our liberties were secured by the labor and blood of so many. May Christians not become a cause of our country’s demise. Do not basely relinquish what they secured for us.
UPDATE: I was very happy to see this on Wednesday, February 24, and learn there’s evidence fellow Christians (aside from the fakes and untaught) haven’t lost their discernment and minds!
Photograph: North Minneapolis Storm Damage, Tony Webster. cc-by-2.0.
Derek Kidner, The Message of Hosea, 79.
C. F. Keil and F. Delitzsch, Commentary on the Old Testament, vol. X , 114.
J. B. Hindley, “Hosea,” The New Bible Commentary: Revised, 711.