The Race For the Republican Nomination: Of Trump, Evangelicals, and Self-Appointed Prophets

American Christianity 2Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies. – Groucho Marx

The Christian Post reports that

At a campaign rally for Sen. Ted Cruz in Utah Saturday, popular radio host Glenn Beck accused evangelical Christians who are supporting Republican frontrunner Donald Trump of “not listening to their God.”

“Utah has an incredible opportunity. So many Christians have been standing up. But all throughout the South the evangelicals are not listening to their God. Let us raise a standard in Utah,” Beck said in support of Trump’s Republican rival. 

Addressing Mormon voters directly, Beck then asked: “Where the hell are the priesthood holders? Where are you? Thank you. It’s time to stand up. It’s time to stand up. You know what time it is. The priesthood is supposed to rise up and restore the Constitution. Now is that time. Period.”

Cruz went on to win the Utah caucuses Tuesday, capturing 69.2 percent of the vote and taking all 40 delegates, though he still trails Trump in the delegates race.

Beck has strongly criticized Trump’s portrayal of himself as a Christian, suggesting back in February that even the idea that Trump reads the Bible is a “crock of [expletive].”

Beck said at a South Carolina Cruz rally that “too many people are looking at Trump and believing that man has ever opened a Bible … that’s the biggest crock of [expletive] I’ve ever heard.”

Trump has insisted that he is a Presbyterian and has a “great relationship” with God. He’s also claimed that “nobody reads the Bible more than me.”

Polls have showed that there is an important distinction to be made in regard to what type of evangelicals are voting in the elections, however.

A Pew Research analysis found that 39 percent of self-identified evangelical voters in the Republican Party do not believe that the Bible is the literal Word of God, while a separate Wall Street Journal poll showed that only 38 percent of Trump supporters attended worship on a weekly or more basis. 

Anthony B. Bradley, chairman of the program in religious and theological studies, who also serves as associate professor of religious studies at King’s College in New York City, told The Christian Post during an interview last month that evangelicalism is not among the top concerns of evangelicals going to the polls.

“Trump evangelicals are evangelicals who have been on the margins. They are not mainstream evangelicals who are burdened by the sort of traditional concerns of the Church. Trump evangelicals are angry. They are mad at the Obama administration. They believe that the Obama administration has ruined the country,” Bradley told CP.

Dr. Richard Land, president of the Southern Evangelical Seminary and executive editor of The Christian Post, questioned the self-identified evangelical supports of Trump, and said that true evangelicals vote for their values.

“I vote my values, my beliefs and my convictions, I’m not pragmatic. Which means I don’t compromise my values, beliefs and convictions for what I may perceive to be my own narrow self-interests. I don’t see pragmatic in the New Testament, I see being salt and light,” said Land.

Okay. Before I begin this rant…err…analysis…please allow me to state up front, that I am a Bible-believing Christian, who lives in the Northwest Corner of the Magnolia State, and I am heavily involved in my local Contemporary Southern Baptist Church.

Dr. Bradley, judging by your position in academia, you are no doubt a learned man.

Saying that, please allow me to ask you this: Who are you to question my Christianity, over whom I decide to cast my vote for in any election, much less this very important one?

Sir, my faith is not marginal. I stand on The Solid Rock, not shifting sands.

America is a Constitutional Republic, not a Theocracy. And, as such, Americans, including the 75% of us who declare that Jesus Christ is our Personal Savior, must each make our own individual choice as to whom would best represent us as the Leader of the Free World, based upon both logic and the Spiritual Gift of Discernment.

Logic dictates that I vote for someone who will keep my family, my friends, and my country safe from the murderous barbarians that are at our gates. It also drives me to choose someone who actually has a chance to defeat the Democrat Candidate, the representative of the political party whose sitting President has driven this Sovereign Nation straight down the Highway to Hell, over the last seven years.

Judging from the Republican Primaries’ outcome, so far, the overwhelming majority of voters believe that candidate to be Donald J. Trump.

Concerning the Gift of Discernment, that gift has led me to observe that there are no Saints running for the Presidency of the United States of America…not one.

It has also led me to discern that Glenn Beck has become crazier than an Outhouse Rat. (That’s a Southern Colloquialism for meshuga, Professor.)

I can remember when The Glenn Beck Program first came on in the Memphis Radio Market.

I remember thinking, “Hey, this fellow’s pretty sharp. He’s entertaining and he makes some excellent political points.”

Through the era of the TEA Party and the 2008 elections, Beck became a TEA Party Darling, standing in solidarity with those Americans, who were “Taxed Enough Already”.

But then…things slowly started to change.

Imperceptible at first, Beck slowly, over a span of years, changed from being an analyzer of the news, to a maker of it. He changed from being a commentator to being a self-appointed prophet.

Now, with the very real possibility of Donald J. Trump becoming the Republican Nominee as their Presidential Candidate, Beck, whose severe case of Trump Derangement Syndrome, has made his once-entertaining radio program unlistenable, has now turned into an Old Testament Prophet, shaming those Christians who may even be thinking about voting for Trump, instead of Beck’s “Anointed” Candidate, Senator Ted Cruz.

I do believe that Beck’s Holy Garments have ridden up into a dark and lonely place.

Finally, addressing Dr. Land…I respect you tremendously, sir.

In responding to your admonition, please allow me to reply with a Facebook Post from last Saturday, from someone that I also respect tremendously, Rev. Franklin Graham:

Trump Madness—It’s “trumping” everything in the news, even March Madness. Do you believe protesters blocking the road to his rally to stop people from getting there today? There are those who passionately support him and others who are adamantly against him. He’s a political phenomenon like our country hasn’t seen before. I don’t think America has ever had a presidential candidate opposed by both establishments, Republican and Democratic, as well as the sitting president. I just hope that as a result of this unforgettable campaign season, politicians on all sides will get the message loud and clear that Americans are tired of the status quo and the corruption that has gripped Washington. Join me in praying for the 2016 elections and for the future of this nation.

That is my hope, as well, sir.

This is in no way meant to be an equal comparison, but, it is the best that I can come up with…

Just as my choice to accept Salvation through Jesus Christ was a Personal Experience, so is my choice as to whom to vote for in both the Republican Primary and this coming November.

Rest assured, Dr. Land, and all of my “Facebook Friends”, who are so concerned about my Christianity, in light of my perceived Presidential Choice, as a Christian, before I make any decision, I always consult with Someone “above my Pay Grade”.

Way Above.

Until He Comes,

KJ

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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