“Cult?” : Kevin H.

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52 Responses

  1. Em says:

    Republicanitis isn’t part of my Christian faith, however, if one votes Biden Harris, i hope you’ve taken a hard look at Harris because, unless miraculously the party can keep Biden propped up for four years, you’ve just voted Harris into the office of President. Or worse, she steps down and you’ve got President Pelosi.
    I think those who see Trump, the businessman, as a bad President are the ones drinking Kool-Aid… Dunno, thoug, do i. 🙆
    God keep

  2. bob sweat says:

    Excellent!

  3. bob sweat says:

    I never liked Kool-Aid.

  4. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    “Alas, a strongman comes along and proclaims he will save us and our country.”

    Isn’t this the Biden / Harris / DNC battle cry right now — that they are here to save us and our nation from the evil Trump? What a bunch of cultists!

  5. Em says:

    Maybe Kool-Aid drinkers have a personality defect… joking

    Kevin H’s post IS good food for thought as most Born Agains should be discerning….. But, alas, God says we are sheep doing what the sheep (wolf?) in front of us does….

  6. Em says:

    Good question MLD, good question…..

  7. bob sweat says:

    Em

    That’s exactly why I feel we need a different sheep (wolf?) in front of us.

    MLD
    A change of cults would be nice.

  8. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Bob, and that’s all it would be, another cult. I have been trumpeting (pun intended) for the past couple of months that the election means nothing (other than one side gets their guy in) and the issues will remain.

    I would imagine that all the things Obama & Biden were bitching and moaning about in the 2008 campaign are the same they are bringing up today – and they did nothing to correct them during their own 8 years.
    Remember, all of Hillary’s campaign complaints were coming out of the Obama / Biden administration.
    I go back to Truman – you are older than me so maybe you go back one more to FDR – but nothing changes. So if we get a new cult, it will be the 14th cult for me.

  9. bob sweat says:

    MLD

    I’m not that much older than you. 🙂

    Point taken. That’s why I want a new cult.

  10. Kevin H says:

    Em,

    This article is not meant to be an endorsement in any way whatsoever for Biden or any other candidate or party. Rather it is a commentary on how a disturbingly significant amount, and seemingly increasingly so, conservative evangelicals are conducting themselves.

  11. Kevin H says:

    MLD,

    Of course the Biden/Harris/DNC cry is that they are out to save us from Trump. But that’s not the group I’m addressing here.

    And I’m also not addressing the failures of Trump, Biden, Obama or any other politician or party. Again, I am addressing the behavior of a particular group of people who are exhibiting cult like behavior, including the prideful exhibition and justification of sinful behavior in a public fashion, all the while claiming to be standing for Jesus and righteousness.

  12. Dan from Georgia says:

    Nice to see an article from you again Kevin!

  13. Kevin H says:

    Thanks, Dan. Most of my writing thoughts over the past couple years have been related to Christian interaction in politics. But politics already get discussed enough around here even, when articles have little or nothing to do with politics. So I try to reduce Michael’s torment by not sending him too much. 🙂

  14. Jean says:

    Kevin,

    “the laws of the land have been slowly but surely chipping away at religious freedoms,”

    I haven’t noticed the chipping away of any of my religious freedoms. Which religious freedoms have you lost?

  15. Linn says:

    I just saw my sister and brother-in-law over the weekend (I only see them once a year). My bro-in-law is not a Christian. He doesn’t have any religious allegiances at all, except to his new Savior, Donald J Trump. Everything DT does is right and true. COVID-19 is a lie, and all the the lies will go away after Trump is re-elected. There is no discussion; only continuous repetition of anything on Fox News about Trump and his sayings. It’s scary.

  16. I just mentioned to MLD a question regarding Dan 6 and his take on it.
    I dont think ch 6 is directly pertaining to this post but I’m thinking ch.7 does. This is sorta my 10/2020 evolutionary location:

    1. The Church is not a weighted average over 20+ centuries.
    2. Point #1 Guarantees North American Evangelicals will be massively representive of what constitutes a Christian after the Resurrection, in the afterlife.
    3. Evangelicalism is transforming into a civic religion. It can now be discribed ad having an earthly king.
    4. There, the direction of my thinking is Evangelicals may emerge from Resurrection with their civic structure and loyalty to their earthly Head intact.

    I realise I am proposing something outside traditional orthodoxy. Not because I deny orthodoxy, but because orthodoxy was not intended to apply to these sorts of questions.

  17. Em says:

    Kevin @ 11:32
    That is exactly why i felt you’d posted some good food for thought today….. 😘

  18. Bride of Christ says:

    Some may read this article and say that the author is being overly dramatic in his accounts of the Trump cult among white evangelicals. I can tell you that among Calvary Chapel Christians, this description is painfully accurate. So much so that my husband and I left Calvary Chapel after attending for over 3O years. The question is, what happened? Long before Calvary Chapel became so blatantly political, they seemed to demonize other groups in our community. They mocked seminaries ( calling them cemeteries), they constantly demonized the public schools, they claimed that psychologists and mental health medications were demonic and sinful, they implied that a college education was a wasted indulgence, and they even said very negative things about other churches in our communities, calling them “dead” churches, particularly fearing Catholics. They seemed to arrogantly revel in their supposed superiority to everyone else. God tells us that we are a ‘chosen’ but nowhere in the Bible does he tell us that we should be puffed up with pride over our salvation. Bothy of my children were designated as “gifted” intellectually after being IQ tested by their schools. When they notified us, I told them both that that did NOT give them any special status, that conversely, it meant that MORE was expected of them. I raised my children to have humility and to never look down on others. How has the church become so full of pride? Many years of this ‘Us Verses Them’ preaching from Evangelical leaders created a climate that enables the Trump Cult to take root in white evengelucal churches such as Calvary Chapels. “Pride goeth before a fall”; I see evangelism ready to take a great fall after their embrace of Republican politics and Trump. I also believe that too many Calvary Chapelites have sealed themselves in a Christian ‘bubble’ of sorts ( the evangelical ghetto), and they now have a grossly distorted view of the world. Not much different than the QAnon believers, I suppose

  19. Kevin H says:

    Jean,

    I have not personally had any loss of religious freedoms in this country. However, the documented cases of such in this country are continuing to grow, some more well known than others. I am far from one to cry persecution or claim that things like the removal of required school prayer are religious freedom losses, but I do assert that religious freedoms are being slowly chipped away.

    We see cases like the Little Sisters of the Poor being mandated by the government to cover contraception, some that may even be considered to be abortificants, and having to fight endless legal battles about it since the passing of the ACA (even as I believe there were good parts of the ACA, too). There are the continually growing cases of bake shops and florists and photographers who are being made to provide their services to gay marriages even if it violates their consciences due to religious beliefs (even as I believe that in at least some of these cases, it would be the better Christian thing to do to provide the services without resistance). And there are more and more cases like this one: https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/praying-coach-joe-kennedys-lawsuit-against-bremerton-school-district-thrown-out/ where a Christian high school football coach loses his job because he won’t give up his long established habit of kneeling and praying totally on his own after the completion of each game.

    If we go back 10, 15, 20 years, these things were not issues and these people would have been able to conduct themselves according to their consciences and given religious freedoms. Today, it is much more of a possibility that people will get in trouble for doing so.

  20. Kevin H says:

    BOC,

    (by the way, I’m the author of this article) I hear you and can identify with a good much of what you say. Conservative Christians, Calvary Chapel and beyond have been conditioned in a good many ways to get caught up in this current event of Trumpism.

  21. Kevin H says:

    Linn,

    Yes, this can affect non-Christians, too, just as much as Christians. It’s just that Christians who already claim an allegiance to Jesus Christ should have a greater awareness that something’s not right when their allegiance is being taken away from where it should be.

  22. Kevin H says:

    Em, glad you found it good. 🙂

  23. Jean says:

    Kevin,

    During this pandemic, thousands of congregations around the country collected billions of dollars in tax payer money to pay their clergy and other expenses. Taxpayers not only subsidized churches, but any religions. And tax deductions do so also on a regular basis. All that tax money contributes to the ability of religious people to effectively practice their religions. Perhaps they should thank their pagan neighbors for the handouts.

  24. Em says:

    I can see one justification of sorts for evangelicals elevating Trump… He is outspoken in his respect for the Christian Faith as he understands it, perhaps. He comes out of a Presbyterian upbringing, but now declares himself nondenominational… As do i.
    However, that can be a very broad brush – a bit loosie-goosey? For my part, i consider myself a Bible respecting, conservative non denom’ evangelical…. Can’t stand prosperity gospel as i understand it…..
    AND a BIT of a libertarian political. . .

  25. Em says:

    Jean @ 1:52
    How did the churches do that exactly? ? ?

  26. Jean says:

    Em, they were included in the PPP program of the second stimulus bill. The Catholics reportedly took 1.3 billion. My little congregation took about $20k.

    I have no idea what the Mormons, JWs, Adventists, Scientologists, Christian Scientists, Moonies, Mosques, synagogues, and assorted other temples and cults received.

  27. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    My congregation took no PPP money. I as the congregational president I got together with the pastor and head elder to say no — we did not want their filthy lucre.

    You had to fill out a form and tell them why you needed it – none of their business. Then you must tell the congregation why you took it. What are you going to say, “we can’t manage our church during a crisis?”

    I think it was wrong for it to be offered to churches — but then at the same time, I was against bailing out the auto industry. 🙂

  28. Duane Arnold says:

    Kevin H

    Nicely done and, sadly, accurate…

  29. Bride of Christ says:

    Em, Prominent Republican Ben Sas on October 16th said that , ” In private, Donald Trump mocks Christians.” If that is true, as he claims it is, then Trump surely does not respect the Christian faith. George Will, a brilliant Catholic political columnist and former Republican left the Republican Party when they nominated Donald Trump. George Will became a registered Independent ( as I have been my entire adult life). He chose his faith, and Jesus, over his political party. Many Christians believe that,Trump is “using ” Christians in order to stay in power. I know that Trump for all of his life supported a woman’s right to choose, and then changed his stance on abortion only when he ran for the presidency. Trump’s relationship to Christians is entirely transactional. Can a man like this really be trusted? So many Republicans are voting for Biden this time around; it is clear that they no longer trust Trump.

    his life publicly claimed that he believed

  30. Em says:

    That is a sad thing.. Unto Caesar what is Caesar’s…..
    I have a hunch God smiled at MLD’s congregation… with Pope Francis at the helm, the RC’s have a list of items that go against God’s directives, it seems to me, i.e., Mary as co-redeemer? Yet there are many God fearing souls in that church, i believe

  31. Kevin H says:

    Jean,

    I don’t think it’s an either or. I think we can be appreciative of the freedoms that do and have long existed and benefit the church, while at the same time recognize that some religious freedoms are being reduced. I think there are far bigger concerns in this country than the small level (at this point) of freedoms that have been lost, but can still acknowledge that they are a concern.

  32. Em says:

    B of C, i have heard that accusation also… Question is, is it the followers or the Faith? Or… Like most of us Trump just may spot the phonies, the exploiters of Christian sheeples

  33. Kevin H says:

    Thanks, Duane.

  34. Jean says:

    “He is outspoken in his respect for the Christian Faith”

    If he gave a damn about the Christian faith, he would not hold super-spreader events and invite all his followers to them. Do you realize that the communities he visits, where he gathers 5-15k people in close proximity, where most people are unmasked, will be felt by those communities in the weeks and months that follow? He is doing this in contravention of his own CDC guidelines. No orthodox Christian doctrine supports this wickedness.

  35. Em says:

    Jean, as a private person i have no idea what he thinks of us, but if he realizes our worth to the nation, he is an asset to our place in this nation….
    One of the outspoken British atheists of our time observed that, although he did not believe in the God of our Bible, everywhere in the world where Christians resided were better places. Old age is blocking my recall of the atheist’s name – sorry

  36. Jean says:

    Em,

    “everywhere in the world where Christians resided were better places.”

    I agree 100%.

    But when if the devil sent us a Trojan Horse, and we thought that this leader would support and strengthen Christianity in America? When if he promised to make Christianity great again? When if he promises to fill all our pews again?

    But when if in reality, what he did was to destroy Christianity in large segments of the Christian church? Wouldn’t that be the greatest Trojan Horse in the history of mankind?

    You see, many if not all of us would like to see a strong and growing Christian church in America. Who would not? But the way to there is where I part company with many.

    Some of us who follow the Scriptures do not see a church that flourishes by secular power. Is there any book of the Bible supporting the view that secular power is there to grow the church?

    I read of a church that suffers from secular power, but through suffering rejoices, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame.”

    I confess that His strength is made perfect in my weakness.

    These are not popular doctrines at all. They will not fill pews, support mega-church budgets or sell lots of books. I get all that. It’s foolishness and a rock of stumbling to many.

    But, and this is very important, Christ will not remove the offense of the cross. And he will not allow any secular government to remove the offense of the cross.

  37. Bob Sweat says:

    BOC
    Well stated!

  38. Dread says:

    I just want to say there’s good people on both sides and there’s some very nasty ones out there too. 😇😎

    It does seem to me that a lot of energy is spent here trying to posture voting for Trump as immoral. 🤷🏻‍♂️ Meh!

    I do see the caveats that are offered. Disclaimers are often just attempts to smear without blowback. Done it myself. So I’ll accept the pass and move on.

    Cult Leader Dread

  39. Mike E. says:

    Kevin–you’ve nailed the thesis to the door, my friend. Many of Trump’s followers are ABSOLUTELY cultish and your description of the characteristics of cultic behavior and especially the techniques cults use is completely accurate. I highly recommend this book, “The Cult of Trump.”

    https://www.amazon.com/Cult-Trump-Leading-Explains-President-ebook/dp/B07MGS7LZS/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3VCVW76B7L8J1&dchild=1&keywords=the+cult+of+trump&qid=1603852726&sprefix=the+cult+%2Caps%2C231&sr=8-1

    It’s written by an expert in the techniques cults use to brainwash their followers. The author shows plainly how Mr. Trump uses these techniques in a diabolical (and darkly skillful) way to brainwash his followers. I’ve been using the hashtag #Cult45 on Twitter for some time now. It’s disgusting, dark, evil, and immoral. Dread..telling the truth is not a smear. A smear is a lie. What Kevin has written here is important and based in truth. And using cult techniques in order to control people is not funny in any way. Yes, of course there’s good people in the Trump cult. There were good people in Jonestown too.

  40. Kevin H says:

    Dread,

    Or maybe they’re not caveats but attempts to genuinely acknowledge not all is bad and even those caught up in cult-like behavior have some good motivations and valid concerns.

  41. Kevin H says:

    Thanks, Mike.

    I’ll have to give that book a look.

  42. Em says:

    Cults? I cannot see Born Again ones following anyone blindly…

    Yet, lazy souls, hungering and thirsting, but not after righteousness – living by emotions? Maybe… Are they the seeds with no roots? Or Are they struggling pilgrims.. Dunno

    something about searching scripture for verification of what is taught..

  43. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    A funny one here to break the tension in both arenas. My son sent me a text saying, “if the Dodgers win the World Series will there be anything left to burn in LA when Trump wins next week?”
    Come on, that’s funny 🙂

  44. Em says:

    Jean, most of what you posted at 4:26, I’d have to agree with…. But is Trump a Trojan Horse? Not unless you are willing to elevate him to a mindless degree. An anti christ? People have worshipped Clinton, Obama, FDR…. Some people even worshipped Elvis, so ….. ? 🙆
    Easy pickins for the devil… Lots of intelligent people and not so smart ones are looking for a god that suits them… sorrowful

  45. Dread says:

    Mookie!

    Yes MLD that’s definitely a chuckle or two.

  46. Michael says:

    “I cannot see Born Again ones following anyone blindly…”

    I’ve spent 20 years documenting the fact that they will do that no matter how wicked the one they follow…

  47. josh hamrick says:

    Just checking in to see if the filet ‘o kevin is ready yet?

  48. UnCCed says:

    To follow the Bible’s example, judgement must begin at the house of the Lord.
    And since anything/one put above/before Jesus is an idol, and functionally a cult leader, well, the church has had many cults.
    Who here has identified themselves with some religious figure above/before Jesus?
    There’s your cult.

  49. Kevin H says:

    Josh,

    The fileting hasn’t been too painful yet.

  50. Kevin H says:

    MLD,

    I TB’s manager hadn’t pulled Blake Snell so early, LA might still have things left to burn today.

  51. Martin Luther's Disciple says:

    Kevin – perhaps, but I do want to thank your town of Philadelphia for joining the Dodgers’ victory celebration and burning down their city too last night.
    A great show of unity! 🙂

  52. Em says:

    One of the hardest things, after one has accepted God’s redemption, may be the realization that we are still living in mortal sinful bodies…. Psalm 41 was my morning reading…
    Michael’s mission seems to be healing the wounded and calling out the wounders…. Do real Christians get caught up in following abusive and false teachers? I bow to experience here… AND
    I join Josh in praying for the Church to wake up, to follow God fearing teachers. I pray that we haven’t entered into God’s discipline, but……
    God keep

    Congratulations to MLD’s Dodgers and my funny is
    Driving downriver a big tom turkey ran out on the road. I screeched to a stop and watched this big bird do a 180 on one foot and run back where he’d come from.. oh well, maybe you had to be th🙆ere……

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