Over the past few months, I’ve heard countless arguments from Christians who support Donald Trump, an amoral liberal, and want others to vote for him, too. I’ve argued with a number of these people online, too, in conversations that usually quickly end up with Christians saying things that sound very much like the excuses Democrats made to protect their immoral liberal some 20 years ago.
I can sympathize with the desire here to find a life raft of absolution in this cesspool sea, the desperate clinging for a straw of nobility in an act that otherwise the decent person realizes deep-down is repugnant. After all, I’ve voted “lesser of two evils” many times in the past myself.
Many of those comparisons and excuses continue, so on the near-eve of the 2016 presidential election, I’d like to address some of those. We should all cast our votes with as much facts, logic and reason as possible. Casting a vote is an incredibly weighty and important act, something that affirms not only the person voted for but the values that person represents, so we should all do our civic duty at the ballot box with our eyes wide open.
I’ve heard a number of Christians looking to justify voting for an amoral liberal compare Donald Trump to King Cyrus and King Nebuchadnezzar. However, it is important to note that the comparison falls flat because, unlike in our American representative democracy, God’s people had no hand and no voice whatsoever in choosing Cyrus or Nebuchadnezzar for power or rejecting him as king. Thus, they did not have a moral choice presented to them, in choosing to affirm a wicked man or to reject that wicked man. In fact, God’s people found themselves under the authority of Cyrus and Nebuchadnezzar through an act of judgement from God. Why were they under these brutal, pagan kings as an act of judgment? Because God’s chosen people had refused to stand firm for what was right, and instead compromised with the world around them to affirm what is wrong. The Bible makes it clear that while God can and does use certain evil people to accomplish his larger purposes, he would much rather see his people stay faithful to his standard, and is far more disposed to use imperfect people who are nevertheless after His own heart and who are genuinely seeking to carry out God’s will through their lives. But have God’s people today refused to stand for God’s values, and have God’s people today embraced the way of the world over God’s way? The evidence has never been more sure than during this election season. So maybe Trump supporters who compare him to Cyrus and Nebuchadnezzar have a point…just not the one they intend.
Trump has also been compared by some to the Old Testament Israelite judge Samson, who had great physical strength from God at his disposal, yet chose to waste it on drunkenness and womanizing. Yes, God managed to use Samson despite his deep flaws, but if you will think back to your Biblical teaching about Samson (i.e. what you were taught and understood before certain people started looking for excuses for voting for Donald Trump), you may recall that the real lesson of Samson was one of an incredible waste of God’s blessing and provision. Perhaps there is some legitimate comparison between Samson and Trump (Trump’s power of finances and fame, squandered with a testimony of womanizing, corruption and debauchery), but not the comparison Trump apologists would like.
Then there is the King David comparison. A man who on one hand was said to be a man after God’s own heart, yet he committed adultery with the wife of one of his most trusted soldiers, then conspired to have that trusted soldier killed in battle when his sin was about to be revealed. David committed some abominable personal sins, and he committed some official acts that cost his nation dearly. There is no denying that, so perhaps there is some basis for comparing the morally bankrupt Donald Trump to King David. But for all of David’s failures, they were followed by genuine sorrow for having sinned against God, and heart-wrenching begging for forgiveness. We’ve seen nothing even remotely like David’s sorrow and repentance from Donald Trump, who has told us he doesn’t need God’s forgiveness.
What did it look like in the wake of David’s repentance?
David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord.” – 2 Samuel 12:13
But David’s heart struck him after he had numbered the people. And David said to the Lord, “I have sinned greatly in what I have done. But now, O Lord, please take away the iniquity of your servant, for I have done very foolishly.” – 2 Samuel 24:10
Then David spoke to the Lord when he saw the angel who was striking the people, and said, “Behold, I have sinned, and I have done wickedly. But these sheep, what have they done? Please let your hand be against me and against my father’s house.” – 2 Samuel 24:17
As for me, I said, “O Lord, be gracious to me; heal me, for I have sinned against you!” – Psalm 41:4
I acknowledged my sin to you,
and I did not cover my iniquity;
I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,”
and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. – Psalm 32
O Lord, rebuke me not in your anger,
nor discipline me in your wrath.
2 Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am languishing;
heal me, O Lord, for my bones are troubled.
3 My soul also is greatly troubled.
But you, O Lord—how long?…
I am weary with my moaning;
every night I flood my bed with tears;
I drench my couch with my weeping. – Psalm 6:1-3, 6
Have mercy on me, O God,
according to your steadfast love;
according to your abundant mercy
blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
and cleanse me from my sin!
3 For I know my transgressions,
and my sin is ever before me.
4 Against you, you only, have I sinned
and done what is evil in your sight,
so that you may be justified in your words
and blameless in your judgment. – Psalm 51:1-4
Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
8 Let me hear joy and gladness;
let the bones that you have broken rejoice.
9 Hide your face from my sins,
and blot out all my iniquities.
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a right[b] spirit within me.
11 Cast me not away from your presence,
and take not your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
and uphold me with a willing spirit.
13 Then I will teach transgressors your ways,
and sinners will return to you.
14 Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God,
O God of my salvation,
and my tongue will sing aloud of your righteousness. – Psalm 51:7-14
Has Donald Trump ever sounded even remotely like this?
And then there’s this to consider:
Now therefore the sword shall never depart from your house, because you have despised me and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife. – 2 Samuel 12:10
If we’re going to compare an unrepentant Donald Trump with a deeply repentant King David, do we as a nation really want to bear along with Trump the consequences of his sin, like the nation of Israel suffered for David’s sin? I don’t. I’d rather keep my hands completely clean from the dirt of both of the major candidates.
When the Bible is taken in the context of its entirety, it is revealed that, when dealing with a human race that is entirely fallen, God is far more interested in a heart that has an attitude of repentance than a life that may be overall better, yet is not marked by the humility of repentance. We are ALL fallen, and do not live up to God’s standard. But we see that flawed people like Abraham, David, Paul and others who eventually leave behind their unbelief and place their faith in God…these are the ones who are recorded as pleasing to God. Not because they lived perfect lives, or perhaps not even the most obedient lives, but because they acknowledged their fallenness before their Creator and placed their lives in His hands.
Donald Trump’s arrogance remains his badge of honor, and there is no sign of genuine repentance. It would be more apt to compare him, not with King David, but with Ahab, or Manasseh, or Ahaz, who reveled in depravity and did it their own way rather than God’s way.
Donald Trump has also been compared to New Testament Saul, who became the Apostle Paul. Saul was not used by God until he had seen the light and repented. Again, Trump has not repented, he only points to the foibles of others, and has said he doesn’t need God’s forgiveness. In fact, Trump has repeatedly reveled in his debauchery and sin, in countless interviews and in a number of things he has published. You will not see David and Paul reveling in their sin or claiming they don’t need God’s forgiveness. What you will see is deep anguish for their sins–even long after they have sought after and received God’s forgiveness (a remorse for past sin that I share, even some 25 years after I repented of my evil ways and was forgiven by God).
Besides, if God can use an amoral liberal like Trump, then he can certainly use an amoral liberal like Hillary Clinton. So why not refuse to affirm either amoral liberal, and just let God work it out? In doing so, all of the responsibility for whoever wins falls on those who voted for these reprobates in the primary, with no responsibility for affirming a wicked person having to fall on a conservative or Christian in the general election. If God can use a wicked person like Donald Trump to accomplish some of his purposes, he can use a wicked person like Hillary Clinton to accomplish some of his purposes, too. At least no person with whom the public associates moral uprightness will be found voting for a reprobate, if we leave it to God.
Then there are those who say, “Well, if you can’t vote for the man, vote for the platform.” The GOP platform is indeed a great statement of affirmation of conservative values that reflect the principles that founded this great nation, as well as reflects God’s values of morality, family, personal responsibility, liberty, etc. For years I’ve worked in support of the South Dakota GOP platform, attending meetings every election year which provide input into the platform, and sometimes going to the state convention to defend the conservative values of the GOP platform. So anyone who knows me knows I believe in the Republican platform and fully support it.
But the best platform in the world is WORTHLESS if elected representatives won’t implement it. We have seen countless liberals in the Republican Party over the past 10-20 years who, while the party that helped get them elected has a great platform, either disregard that platform and won’t work to implement it, or have worked in diametric opposition to that platform. We don’t have to guess whether liberals in the party might do this; we KNOW they ALREADY oppose their own party’s platform, at both the state and federal level. Trump’s own actions and statements, going back decades and in the last year, make it clear that he is just such a RINO. What’s more, it is clear that he has a bigger narcissistic ego than even most of the RINOs who have worked against Republican values, leaving no doubt whatsoever that the GOP platform is worth toilet paper in his hands.
Trump’s recent claims that he will end ObamaCare and start moving the nation back toward free market health care are garbage. He has repeatedly praised the socialized health care systems of other nations, and has told us that the federal government should pay for everyone’s health care.
Trump has also told us that he believes two of the three most important roles the federal government has are education and health care–two things that are NOT authorized by the U.S. Constitution for the federal government to be involved in; two things virtually every conservative realizes are abominable in the hands of the federal government.
Donald Trump has also told us he believes in Marxist progressive taxation, that some people should be taxed more than others. This is yet another area that is anathema to the Republican platform, and to conservatism in general.
Despite claims that Donald Trump will end Roe v. Wade, Donald Trump has told us Planned Parenthood does good work, that his pro-abortion judge sister would make a good Supreme Court justice, has on his SCOTUS list a judge who blocked Indiana from defunding Planned Parenthood and who has called abortion a “right,” he wanted to water down the pro-life plank of the Republican platform before the convention this year, and Trump has very likely aborted at least one of his own children. Does this sound like a pro-life candidate?
Trump has proposed paid maternity leave–something that will come at the expense of businesses and/or the taxpayers, and something that not long ago most conservatives condemned as another unconstitutional welfare state intrusion into the free market.
Donald Trump has told us that homosexual behavior should be protected in federal law as a “civil right,” something that will only accelerate the assault on morality and religious freedom being perpetrated by the homosexual movement. Trump has also made it clear that he will do nothing to reverse the counterfeit marriage push instigated by the Supreme Court. He has also made it clear that he is on board with Bruce Jenner and the transgender agenda–another area being leveraged by the Left to attack morality and religious liberty.
Does this really sound like a man who will follow the Republican Party platform? At all? We’ve had countless “Republican” candidates who sounded more conservative than Trump before getting into office…only to have them make a mockery of the GOP platform once they were elected. Such behavior describes the overwhelming majority of “Republicans” from my state of South Dakota, at both the state and federal level. And to hear them and their supporters tell it, they sounded more conservative before getting into office than Donald Trump sounds now.
Someone who holds these liberal positions is NOT going to uphold the conservative Republican platform. These are the liberal values articulated by the man himself, before he was on the campaign trail and needing the votes of Republicans (and in some cases, liberal things he said even after running as a Republican). You can always put more weight on what a person reveals about themselves before they run for office, versus what they claim on the campaign trail. How many conservative-sounding Republicans have gone on to sell us out to the Left? Think about it? This man is not a conservative. He’s not even really a Republican.
Donald Trump is just another amoral liberal who happens to have an “R” after his name. The facts of this reality are insurmountable. We have to deal with reality, not resort to fantasy and wishful thinking.
There’s just no block on the ballot to vote for a platform, just as there’s no block to vote AGAINST one or another of the candidates. You only have one option per office: vote FOR one of the candidates…and in doing so, affirm the character and policies of that candidate. I just can’t vote for an unrepentant liberal who revels in deplorable behavior.
Remember, there’s more at stake here than just the 2016 presidential election. There’s even more at stake than the damage a Hillary Clinton presidency will likely do to this nation. There is the perversion and shredding of the moral fiber of this country, as upheld by the last remaining group in the nation that cares anything about it: conservatives. If the Right adopts a position that says character doesn’t matter, and that we’re okay with liberal policies as long as the proponent has an “R” after his name (as many on the Right–even among formerly reliable conservatives and Christians–are ALREADY doing), then the last bastion of defense for what is right is lost.
If, after coming to terms with all of Donald Trump’s liberal positions, and with Donald Trump’s moral bankruptcy, you still believe you need to vote for him to stop an even greater evil, then follow your conscience. Even though there is demonstrable evidence that a Trump presidency will do more harm in the long run than a Clinton presidency, do what you believe you need to do.
Just be honest with yourself and others about the facts, and about the inadequacy of most arguments in support of Trump. Because if you can’t be honest with yourself and others about those things in making your evaluation, then you’re already a part of that damage that Donald Trump is doing to the credibility and integrity of the moral fiber of this country.
But stop and consider for a moment: perhaps there’s a better way than choosing “the lesser of two evils.” One that could actually start to make real, much-needed change in the decaying American political system.
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