The Pew Research Center claimed from its polling of the presidential election results last year that over 80% of professing evangelical Christians elected Donald Trump. That is an astounding figure given Mr. Trump’s rather unsavory reputation as a womanizer. But many evangelicals did so because of their opposition to the Democratic candidate Hilary Clinton and her advocating such social positions as abortion, Planned Parenthood, and just a liberal criterion in general. They especially believed that Donald Trump would fill the one vacant seat on the Supreme Court with a conservative judge (which he did do with the appointment of Justice Neil Gorsuch) who might tip the scales in overthrowing Roe v. Wade if it was brought before the high court again.
Jerry Falwell Jr., the president Liberty University in Virginian Beach, Virginia, was surely the loudest evangelical who endorsed Donald Trump during the election. That is so ironic since his father, a Baptist church pastor, came into national prominence by founding the Christian para-church organization Moral Majority in 1979. It became very political and achieved a membership numbering in the millions before Falwell Sr. dissolved it in 1989. Critics said it was neither moral nor a majority.
Nevertheless, on May 12th, President Trump gave the commencement speech at Liberty University. It is now the largest evangelical university in the U.S. Trump spoke often to the 18,000 graduates about the necessity to have determination in order to achieve goals. He repeatedly said to the students, “Never give up.” It wasn’t the first time Trump had spoken at this school.
Early during his presidential campaign, Donald Trump spoke at Liberty University in January, 2016. Something he said that time drew a rather derisive laugh from the students. Trump spoke of one of the Apostle Paul’s New Testament letters, calling it “One Corinthians.” Students laughed because nearly all English-speaking Christians–both young college students and adults of all ages–know of that document verbally as “First Corinthians.” The next letter in the New Testament is Paul’s second letter to that church. (Actually, Paul wrote at least three letters to the church at Corinth; but the first one is non-extant [1 Corinthians 5.9].)
This is one of the few times I go to bat for Donald Trump. All seven different English Bible versions in my library title the two Pauline epistles that follow his “Romans” as “1 Corinthians” and “2 Corinthians.” That should be verbalized “One Corinthians” and “Two Corinthians.” Actually, some scholars and other Bible readers state it as such. And I have noticed that people in the UK do that more often we do here in the U.S.
Trump was not speaking those things to the choir, but to himself. He’s trying to bolster his confidence, and draw support in doing so, in order to endure what will be difficult days ahead for him with these congressional and special counsel investigations into what is being called Russiagate since it has some similarities to Watergate. I think evangelicals are being foolish to continue with their wagon hitched to Donald Trump.
In James Comey’s testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee Thursday, five times he called President Trump a liar. Yesterday, President Trump pretty much called Comey a liar. So, it has come down to what I thought would happen: a he-said, he-said. Trump then took questions from the media. When asked if he would testify before the congressional committee to that effect, he answered without hesitation, “Yes, 100%.” That could have been a legal miscue.
It is now being reported that Donald Trump is trying to hire lawyers in creating a legal defense team but that he is having difficulty getting the best lawyers. His personal lawyer, Marc Kasowitz, spoke publicly yesterday on Trump’s behalf, adopting Trump’s usual attack mode. It is also being reported that Jay Sekulow, Chief Counsel for American Center for Law and Justice, has been added to this Trump legal team. This is a non-profit, evangelical law firm which advocates for Christian causes, with its headquarters located near where I live, in Scottsdale, Arizona. Sekulow is a U.S. constitutional law specialist.
Donald Trump is a 70-year old, multi-billionaire who had a very comfortable life, great-looking young wife, devoted kids and grandchildren, and could play all the golf he wanted at any of his many luxurious and green (pun intended) golf courses. In fact, to get away from it all, he’s taking the weekend off right now at Trump National Golf Club at Bedminster, New Jersey. Why go through all of this hassle? It isn’t worth it. As I said in a recent post, I think The Donald will bite his lip and give up, resigning the presidency within a year from now. But I admit that I could be wrong–it could 2 years.