Why Do Christians Love Trump?: Kevin H

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48 Responses

  1. Tim Brown says:

    Thanks, Kevin.

    What I never hear in discussions excoriating all things Trump and those who vote for him is that many vote the Republican ticket, regardless of who the nominee is. I would vote Republican whether it was Trump or Haley or DeSantis or… For many, a vote for Trump is a vote for the Republican party platform – not for him as the ideal candidate. I don’t vote for a personality or a party, but for a platform. I think it is a categorical error to equate every Republican vote with a Trump devotee. Trump’s personal behavior is horrific. Biden’s political positions which champion those things that are an abomination to the heart of God are horrific, too. I would rather have an immoral man working for my values than a moral man working against them. (And I do not equate Biden with a moral man.)

  2. Michael says:

    Tim,

    That argument would make sense if there were not others who can carry the same platform.

    It is a fact that the strongest pro-Trump group is evangelicals…who refuse to look at other options with the same “values”.

  3. Kevin H says:

    Tim,

    Yes, I agree with Michael, if Republican Christians are concerned with platform then they have had plenty of other options that could vote for in the primaries rather than Trump, yet they still vote for Trump more than anyone else. Shouldn’t behavior and character mean at least something? If it is 100% platform and nothing else, then that is willingly choosing ignorance and irresponsibility.

    One other note on your comment – No where in this article do I equate every Republican who votes for Trump as a devotee, and I have delineated such many times before in previous writings.

  4. Bob Sweat says:

    I’m not sure what the platform of the Republican Party is anymore other than elect Trump, build a wall, drill for oil, and rid the nation of illegals. I guess for most Republicans that’s all that is needed.

  5. Michael says:

    Tim’s argument is completely pragmatic.
    This pragmatism is the same reason that Christians don’t deal with abuse and corruption in the camp…”he’s such a good teacher”…

    How one deals with this scripturally is beyond me…

  6. Michael says:

    A reader in moderation wants to know why he never sees an article on Biden here.

    The same reason you never see anything about any other politician…it has no bearing on the mission here, which is the church.

  7. Kevin H says:

    Michael, you beat me to it. I was going to answer only because so many other people raise the same question/complaint.

    But what about Biden…
    But what about Hillary…
    But what about Obama…

    My writings are NEVER focused on the politician. Rather, the focus is on the Christian.

    If Christians were regularly all enamored with Biden, treating him as some kind of God-sent savior, excused and justified all his bad behavior, and promoted all kinds of his lies and conspiracy theories, then I’d be writing articles to Christians that included Biden in the context. But anyone with even the littlest semblance of honesty must admit that there is no comparison whatsoever as to the love and worship that is shown by the church to Trump versus the love and worship shown by the church to Biden or any other Democratic politician.

  8. Michael says:

    Kevin H,

    Exactly.

    To make matters worse they use the same kind of verbiage and fervor that supporters of people like Bob Coy used…this is not simply a coincidence…

  9. Tim Brown says:

    Good points all. One response might have to do with the ability to get elected and the ability to get things done. Another response could be that Washington DC demonstrated long ago that morality and ethics don’t mean much to her. Candidates demonstrating victory are preferred to candidates of virtue.

    Another thing I don’t understand is the monolithic language used in discussions like these. When someone speaks of the “worship shown by the church to Trump…” The church doesn’t worship Trump. Some in some churches do, I guess. But certainly not the blood bought, Bible taught, Spirit-filled church. And even the word ‘worship’ goes too far. Is there anyone who thinks Trump is God? Really? I wish discussions such as these, especially those engaged in by Christians, would use more judicious language.

  10. Michael says:

    Tim,

    One only need look at the t-shirts,hats and other paraphernalia worn by evangelicals at Trump rallies to see messianic parallels.

    Trump himself is using a video that has messianic overtones to appeal to his base.

    Your argument is wholly pragmatic and your view of “morality” is limited to the things that offend you…not to a general biblical morality…

  11. Kevin H says:

    Tim,

    Here are the first two entries for worship in Merriam Webster’s dictionary

    1: to honor or show reverence for as a divine being or supernatural power

    2: to regard with great or extravagant respect, honor, or devotion

    While very few Christians (or people of any kind) fall into the first definition as to how they “worship” Trump, there are tons of Christians (and even church bodies as a whole) who readily fall into the second definition. Yes, many even in those churches who would claim to be “blood bought”, “Bible taught”, and “Spirit-filled”.

  12. Kevin H says:

    And yes, of course, not nearly every Christian or church “worships” Trump. My language in the original article was not monolithic as it made a delineation at the end about those who don’t, even praising them.

    The truth is that there IS much Trump worship (i.e. to regard with great or extravagant respect, honor, or devotion) in the church that never should be.

    We should respect our governmental leaders. However, to give great or extravagant respect, honor, and devotion to a person of habitual bad character and behavior is completely inexcusable, most especially for the Christian who has been taught in Scripture as to the difference between right and wrong and the importance of character and behavior.

  13. Kevin H says:

    Michael,

    That video, the maker of it, and anyone who buys into it actually fall much closer to the first definition of worship.

  14. Michael says:

    I couldn’t get it to format to the site…will try again later.

  15. Tim Brown says:

    Thanks for the conversation. Blessings.

  16. Joseph Hawkins says:

    Trump is bad but Biden is even worse. At least Trump knows the difference between men and women and that men can’t become women and that women can’t become men plus 1% inflation in December of 2019 beats the 4% inflation we had in December of 2023 and the stagflation we still have. Trump’s economy was so good that Obama wanted to take credit for it. King David had his character flaws and moral failings too. As far as we know Trump has never had a man killed so he could steal his wife

  17. Kevin H says:

    Joseph,

    And what does any of that have anything to do with what the article was about?

  18. Kevin H says:

    Linn,

    There are definitely many today who identify as evangelical, especially in political polls, who exhibit little in their life that they are committed to the faith. Then again, there still are many committed evangelicals who giddily ride the Trump train.

    Evangelical has always been a term hard to nail down.

  19. PM says:

    @Joseph,

    It’s a nitpick but I don’t believe stagflation means what you think it does.

    The rest of it what-about-what-about misses the entire point.

    Kevin takes great care to state his position(s) in a factual and humble way. Almost any writer or aspiring writer (or person who wants to be taken seriously) would be served well by doing the same.

  20. Kevin H says:

    Thank you, PM.

  21. Janet Linn, BrideofChrist says:

    I read with interest Tim Brown’s first comment here. He says that many Trump supporters are simply “voting Republican” and many are not necessarily big Trump fans. He fails to take into account the many Republicans who couldn’t bring themselves to support or vote for Trump at all. Some Republicans even left the Republican party over Trump. My father, an M.I.T. mathematician, voted Republican his entire life. He was so appalled that Trump was the candidate in 2016 that he didn’t vote for either Trump or Hillary in the 2016 election. He always supported the Republican Party with generous financial donations, but he stopped sending the Republicans money that year. He said “The Republican party leaders were supposed to prevent someone like Trump from being the presidential candidate, and they failed”. My father died last year at age 96 and it’s been a hard year for me as I miss him terribly, but sometimes I feel glad that he doesn’t have to witness the shameful failure of the Republican Party to once again fail so miserably. Trump should not be their presidential candidate – he’s unfit on so many levels. The Republican party is obviously badly broken and the Republican Party has completely lost its moral compass.

  22. Michael says:

    Janet Linn, BrideofChrist,

    I’m sorry for the loss of your father.
    I amen the rest of your comment.

  23. Michael says:

    Trumps economy didn’t have to deal with the after effects of the shutdowns and the incredible failure of our supply lines that helped make inflation what it was.

    I sincerely doubt that he could have kept this country from recession as Biden has done…whether you like Biden or not.

    We do agree that Trump knows what a girl is…

  24. PM says:

    Here is my on-topic experience:

    Central California, lots of Rush growing up and into my late teens. He was entertaining back then. My dad was pretty apolitical due to a specific denomination’s stance on political involvement. Then that affiliation changed and he became more interested. There was a period of Bill Gothard(I’m not aware of any resultant issues from that time with my siblings or me). We received the newsletter from FRC and I read it with some interest- especially the plot summaries of various TV shows they castigated. Then Fox News, etc, even to the point where my dad seemed to respect Glenn Beck and others. I think Beck is Mormon so that was a little strange. I digress…

    Thankfully, although he voted for Trump the first time, and I think the second too, he drew the line at all the worship (yes, worship is the best word to describe the actions of many Christians with regard to Trump). He sported a MAGA hat back in 2019 occasionally and I respectfully let him know that I thought DT was a liar and not worthy of promoting. For a couple of years while David French was still at the Dispatch I shared an occasional article with him and to which he didn’t react to either negatively or positively. He’s in his 80’s and if pushed, I think he admit Trump has damaged the evangelical church.

    The trajectory Kevin describes occurring over a 40 year period matches well with my observations. I’m 50. What’s changed dramatically are the charges leveled against the “them”. It used to be “corrupt”, “ungodly”, “sinful” —- then it was “evil”, now it goes straight to “pedophile”. Now, from a Christian perspective, the first 3 may have been true, though not at ll charitable. The last one however is casual slander and makes the first three seem like a compliment. DT gave them a license to lie. Unfortunately, too many Trump followers have ruined their Christian witness, and the witness of others too. At least 30 years ago character still mattered to most.

    Registered R, disgusted by my team and sad for those who have chosen to support DT, especially the 2020-2024 edition.

  25. Kevin H says:

    91 felony indictments later and Iowa showed that Trump’s support from evangelicals has only grown since 2016.

    https://currentpub.com/2024/01/16/91-felonies-later-and-trumps-evangelical-support-is-growing/

    “And the word of the Lord came to me: ‘Son of man, these men have taken their idols into their hearts, and set the stumbling block of their iniquity before their faces.'”- Ezekiel 14:2-3

  26. Michael says:

    From Beth Moore;

    “Sobered by last night and trying to practice what people call radical acceptance, not of a presidential candidate because surprising things happen. Just plainly sobered by the thought that, with other individuals to choose from, masses of people still hail Trump. He’s what they actually want in a leader. A bully. A verbally abusive, artfully and purposely divisive bully who has all but left the Republican Party unrecognizable. I don’t know. I just can’t understand it. Maybe I’ve got a mental block. But, you who are staunch Republicans, why don’t you care about your own party more than that?

    Forgive me. I don’t want to be a repeat performance of my 2016 self. I don’t. I didn’t like her anymore than you did. I intend to deal differently with this. I do not intend to get obsessed. I do not intend to lose more relationships. I don’t intend to talk about this regularly.

    As the Scriptures say, I want to seek peace and pursue it. I want to be a person of kindness, love and compassion.

    But I’ve got to move to a place of radical acceptance. It was one thing to cast a vote for a party’s only candidate, reasoning the choice as the lesser of two evils. This is quite another thing. This is wide-open-eyed, “we WANT Trump!”

    Anyway, this is where we are. We can complain all we want about our leaders but, in this government by the people, at the end of the day and the beginning of November, our candidates are mirrors of ourselves.”

  27. Captain Kevin says:

    ❤️ Beth Moore

  28. Dave says:

    Kevin H.

    You’ve raised some valid observations regarding culture and theology. However, when considering Michael’s purpose for creating this discussion forum, exposing bad actors, corrupt leadership structure & rotten fruit within the Church …the question being asked doesn’t seem surprising, nor necessary. (But yeah, it’s expected, given the focus on this topic in prior articles & election season).

    No, I don’t think the cited church response is shocking, especially not when well-meaning folks purportedly ‘filled with Spirit’, will dutifully endure the most unbiblical spectacles of heretical showmanship, fanciful exaggerations & outright lies from the pulpit. Sadly, in many cases, they deserve what they get …for neglecting their ‘due diligence’ by allowing dudes like Driscoll, to gather an audience and slither back onto stage.

    Not a week goes by, that another Christian scandal hasn’t rocked a community and left behind a destructive trail of broken hearts, absconded funds, shattered trust and concerned brethren whose WARNINGS went unheeded and had reasonably PREDICTED the outcome.

    If the inability of Christians to accurately ascertain pastoral character, recognize administration ‘red flags’ and discern manipulative abuses of scripture in a church setting, is THAT degraded …why would we expect those same ‘atrophied senses’ to somehow become ‘magically heightened’ with regard to secular issues?

    Honest question: Would you be gratified if your writing persuaded someone to cast their vote for a candidate other than the ‘one whom shall not be named?’ I no longer vote, so I can’t be influenced …and I have no agenda, nor anything at stake here. I can find common ground with all sides of the political issue, without waving ‘my tribal flag’.

    I’m just grateful that this article helps to unintentionally confirm my decision to stop attending church …so I have yet to witness this political idolatry that I keep hearing so much about.

  29. Kevin H says:

    Dave,

    “Honest question: Would you be gratified if your writing persuaded someone to cast their vote for a candidate other than the ‘one whom shall not be named?’”

    Honest answer – Not really, at least if that is the only or primary result.

    My aim is not to persuade people how to vote. My aim is to exhort Christians to more care about and more closely follow the ways of Christ, especially in areas where my own most immediate Christian family and culture appear to be significantly lacking in doing so. I suspect if my message is persuasive in this regards, the end result would be some change in votes, but my focus is on the Christian’s heart and mind in successfully representing Christ and demonstrating his love and compassion, and not on who they vote for.

    And please don’t allow Christian hypocrisy to be confirmation for leaving church. Christians are just as human as anyone else, and even though they are taught better by their Lord, human nature to transgress still often wins out, myself included. Yet God knows that his hypocritical children still need each other, and so He calls us not to try to do it on our own, but rather to help each other and build each other up, knowing that we will do so ever so imperfectly.

    It’s possible to find a church where the church and its people do not major on this political hypocrisy. I have found one and if you note the last paragraph of my writing, I commend other such churches and Christians who are truly out there and faithfully (yet imperfectly) striving to live as the Lord calls us to do so.

  30. Muff Potter says:

    I am completely baffled as to why Evangelicals love Trump so much.
    What do they see in that man?

  31. Michael says:

    Dave,

    My first thoughts about Trump long ago were that he reminded me of a bunch of mega-church pastors …complete carny show drawing in the suckers.
    I just had no idea how many suckers there were…

  32. Captain Kevin says:

    Dave and Kevin: “It’s possible to find a church where the church and its people do not major on this political hypocrisy. I have found one…”

    I can also attest that it’s possible. I’ve been attending the same church for over three years, and not once has anything political been mentioned from the pulpit. We strive to be evangelical in the true sense of the word.

  33. Pineapple Head says:

    Trump concerns me greatly, but the response of many Christians to Trump concerns me more.

  34. Mr. Spock says:

    I recently left the CC that I was attending (Castle Rock, CO) primarily because the love of Trump was starting to show itself in various ways. I’m now attending (and will likely become a member of) an EPC church. The Pastor tells me that they work hard at keeping politics out of church. Amen.

  35. Dave says:

    Kevin H.

    “My aim is not to persuade people how to vote”. “I suspect if my message is persuasive is this regard, the end result will be some change in votes…”

    Well …some might conclude that’s some creative & microscopic splitting of hairs, or ‘fancy literary footwork’, Kevin. Sounding very, ahem, …‘diplomatic’ and possessing the uncomfortably familiar ring of the politico-speak dialect: (Typically overheard and practiced by the indigenous people groups comprising two distinct warring tribes, continually fighting over resources and territorial dominance of Capital Hill)

    A long oral tradition for the ancient skill of ‘the forked tongue’ exists within this geographic region …handed down over many moons and judiciously preserved by successive generations of both tribes, in which wisened village elders instruct their young warriors in the craft of producing carefully parsed words … from both sides of the mouth.

    I could imagine the same words being delivered with equal sincerity, from the pulpit of a Christian Nationalist.

    I remain astounded by the disconnect occurring between the few direct references by Jesus (or elsewhere in NT), to earthly politics …and the imaginative ‘colorful expounding’ of same … in church (or amongst casual discourse of Christians).

    I believe that one has to really labor, to ‘shoehorn the topic’ into conversation intended to point one another toward Christ-like behavior.

    What am I missing? How does one reconcile Paul’s instructive admonition ‘in being a GOOD soldier of Christ Jesus, to NOT get involved with CIVILIAN affairs …but look RATHER, at that which pleases his Commanding Officer’.

    (Or, is this an occasion where we dust off the tired religious cliché: “He’s so heavenly minded, as to be useless in matters of earthly concern”)

    Thus, another ‘rinse and repeat cycle’ of the continued fracturing of unity in thought and purpose …amongst God’s people, (and the creation of still, one MORE denomination). “Ugh!”😩

    Is there a temporal HOME for this weary traveller?

  36. Dave says:

    Captain Kevin,

    I envy your good fortune at finding a safe harbor of intellectual and spiritual freedom. (Jesus promises REST …the alternative is a heavy load and heavenly obstruction)

    Is it expecting too much to entrust shepherds of God’s flock to allow unobstructed liberty of personal conviction that doesn’t attempt to bind one’s conscience, thereby unauthorized encroachment and efforts to manipulate extra biblical CIVILIAN affairs?

    Anything else, feels like the burdensome province of the Pharisees: Legalistic and unjustified sheep-beating.

  37. Kevin H says:

    Dave,

    You can choose to believe that I am speaking with “forked tongue” and am laboring hard to “shoehorn the topic” into conversation. Or you can choose to take me at face value that my overriding concern truly is with Christians faithfully representing Christ and faithfully living out His love and compassion in relation to others. I can be the cynical type, too, but at some point you have to be able to give the benefit of the doubt or place some manner of trust into at least some people, or else you’re going to end up living a pretty unsettled, lonely, and miserable life.

  38. Kevin H says:

    Mr. Spock,

    I’m glad to hear of your encouraging report.

  39. Kevin H says:

    Just for clarification purposes, I don’t believe that churches should intentionally avoid addressing any topic that may have political implications. Some topics may be very applicable depending on the Scripture that is being expounded upon, and other times church leaders may discern the need to address certain topics that may be affecting or impacting their people.

    But what churches must avoid is the politically partisan presentation of such topics, or always speaking to pet political issues. Rather, topics which may have political implications in our culture should be spoken to solely through the lens of the principles and commands we are given in Scripture, and not through any sense that works to square with or show favoritism towards any earthly political ideology, movement, or person.

  40. Terry says:

    Side note – Here’s where I think we find ourselves one year from now:

    Trump and Biden are the nominees, and none of the legal stuff affects Trump’s ability to run. We have a close election, but Biden eeks out the win again. Both sides are motivated, but there are simply more people who don’t want Trump as president than those who do. It has nothing to do with Biden.

    Trump claims it was rigged (surprise) but his followers are too exhausted by it all to pull another January 6th type event. It might get ugly, but there will be no civil war. Just more of the same thing for the next 4 years.

    The end.

  41. JD says:

    Just vote for Jesus Christ as the write-in choice and end the stupid popularity contest and foolish bickering.
    I don’t think God approves of either party or candidate; but in the Bible Baalam rode a donkey, not an elephant. Maybe he was wearing a Whig. That story provides all the information needed to make an informed choice.

  42. Duane Arnold says:

    A question for Michael and Kevin:

    We are basically talking about idolatry. The idolizing of an individual regardless of their conduct and or cruelty. Are those who engage in such idolatry still within the household of faith? If they are, what does that say about our shared faith in the light of such idolatry? If they are not within the household of faith, what should be our response to their idolatry?

    Personally, I would be hard-pressed to believe that Paul would have given a pass to idolaters in the Corinthian church. In the last century, the confessing church in Germany certainly did not give a pass to the German church. Have we reached that point?

  43. Michael says:

    Duane,

    Difficult question, as you know.

    A lot of the answer will center around the question of what it means to be in the household of faith and how one gets in or is excluded.

    I can only say this…Christian Nationalism is a perversion of the real Christian faith with a different Gospel.

    I have had people leave my church over these issues and we’ve had many leave here…I can’t judge their eternal standing, but they are standing on theological quicksand.

  44. Kevin H says:

    Duane,

    I would answer similarly to Michael in that these are difficult questions to answer.

    Theoretically, I would think that anyone who claims to be a confessing Christian and yet holds to such idolatry, they should be treated as a Christian, and thus be subjected to church discipline if they refuse to repent. Practically, that is next to never going to happen as it would tear apart most churches, and then in others, even the leaders themselves are guilty of such idolatry and leading the charge into it.

    If someone does not claim to be of the household of the faith, then that lessens our responsibility to do something, at least within the church, but the difficulty is that most claim to be in the faith.

    Beyond speaking to and verbally challenging the idolatry (and of course praying for changed hearts), I am not creative or wise enough to know what more we can do. I don’t think we are nearly to the point of where things were in Germany, but the parallels of going down the same path are downright scary.

  45. Dave says:

    Kevin H.

    I actually AM convinced that you are deserving of ‘the benefit of the doubt’, in light of the quality of character that comes across in your comments. I honestly don’t think you intended to communicate in a deceptive manner at all…“Forked tongue” is hyperbolic word play, as was my ‘labor in shoehorning an indigenous people’s theme’ into the paragraph.

    The amusing parallel between Calvary Chapel’s ‘non-denominational denomination’ …and your ‘non-contradictory contradiction’ invited examination and commentary from the peanut gallery. The intriguing irony and unintentionally mixed messages nestled betwixt your two statements …proved ’too irresistible to needle.’

    I suppose a playfully sarcastic emoji would’ve been appropriate decor, to signal context/intention. On a more serious note: True enough, I can’t deny my cynicism and hesitancy to extend trust. Your stated intentions are sincere and noble …though we must respectfully ‘agree to disagree’ in the means by which our convictions lead us toward that objective.

  46. Linn says:

    On Trump supporters vs worshipers-I know a number of people at my church who are Trump supporters, but not worshipers. They do not wear T-shirts praising Trump or go to his rallies, but they will vote for him because of his stand on abortion, his stand on America first, and immigration. If you point out the chaos of his administration and the criminal charges, they will claim it isn’t true or not as bad as it appears.

    They are kind of like the Nixon supporters and Watergate. Yes, Watergate was bad, he shouldn’t have erased the tapes…but he was still better than the opposition.

    I didn’t understand them then, and I don’t understand them now.

  47. Alan says:

    🤦‍♂️

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