Christianity, Evangelicals, Franklin Graham, Goats, Sheep, Trump

Separating The Sheep From The Goats

By Susan Kuebler

For those who truly believe in and follow the teachings of Jesus, for those of other religious faiths, and even for those who do not believe at all, Trump has done one great favor to Christianity.  He has shown to the world that there are those who call themselves “Christians” while they are willing to support one of the most amoral men who ever occupied the Oval Office.  Not only that, but these people have clearly identified themselves by their unwavering support of an unrepentant liar, fornicator, gossip, thief, and adulterer.  “Unrepentant” is the key word here because their is no justification whatsoever for their support.

Has Donald Trump met a Commandment he didn’t break?  Has he born false witness against his neighbor?  Yes. Has he committed adultery? Yes. Has he coveted his neighbor’s belongings? Has he honored the Sabbath? No. Has he taken the Lord’s name in vain? Probably.  Did he honor his mother and father? The fact that he had to be sent away to military boarding school as a child should answer that one.

Yet those people who besmirch the name of “evangelicals” such as Franklin Graham (who also besmirches the legacy of both his father and his mother) and Robert Jeffress have gone so far as to say that God himself chose Trump to be President. They do not deserve the honorific of being called “Reverend.”  Other so-called evangelicals at the national, state, and local levels have also decided to support Donald Trump and have called upon their followers to do the same. Those who call themselves advocates of the “prosperity” gospel such as Joel Osteen and Paula Jones are heretics who do not even deserve to be called Christians in the first place.

These false prophets have gone so far as to claim that God has used flawed people throughout history to achieve his purposes.  That is true.  But thanks to a recent commentary on this subject by Rabbi Josh Yuter (@JYuter) on Twitter I realized that there is a clear distinction between men such as Saul and David.  Both men were used by God, but whereas David’s faults were many and personal, his love for God never wavered.  Saul’s sins were committed against the authority of God and he paid for that with his life and the life of his son.

Take a look at the following post by Jack Jenkins, a graduate of the Harvard Divinity school and a writer on religion for the outlet ThinkProgress.  It shows a breakdown in the support of evangelicals versus “ordinary” Christians for Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore:

Yes, it certainly does say a lot about Moore’s support.  As well as “evangelical” Christians.  It shows that there are some evangelicals who do understand the teachings of Jesus and refuse to support a man who has been accused of both child molestation and sexual relations with teenagers when he was a grown man.  It shows that the majority of mainline Christians also recognize the difference.

Perhaps we have been too complacent for too long about the influence of “evangelical” theology.  If there is a “war” on Christianity, it is coming from within, not from other religions or secular forces.  In Matthew 25:31-46 Christ lays out the criteria for those who would be called “sheep” (good) and the “goats” (bad).

“For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you looked after me.”

When the righteous protested that they had not done such things for Jesus, His response was one we should all remember:

“Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”

Remember not only the evangelicals, but also the politicians who claim to be Christian, after all this is over.

Support a wall to keep out the Mexicans. “I was a stranger and you invited me in.”

Reduce healthcare for the needy. “I was sick and you looked after me.”

Cut benefits for the elderly and the poor “For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to eat.”

If Trump has done one favor for this country, it has been to identify the hypocrites and the “goats” amongst the so-called Christians of our country.  Remember them.  Denounce them from the pulpit. Call them out in your church.  If possible, with love, show them the error of their ways.

You are an ambassador for Christ.  Act like one.

"All shall be well and all shall be well and all manner of things shall be well". Julian of Norwich.

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