Trump, Evangelicals, and the Dance of Hypocrisy

Trump, Evangelicals, and the Dance of Hypocrisy May 9, 2024

Image created via Leonardo.ai

In the ever-shifting sands of American evangelical ideology, one might expect biblical teachings on morality and ethics to serve as guiding principles in shaping political allegiances. However, recent history unveils a starkly different narrative—one where moral relativism reigns supreme, and the highest bidder for power is crowned king, regardless of their ethical bearings.

Enter the Orange Messiah, Donald J. Trump, the unlikely darling of the evangelical world. Despite a laundry list of ethical and moral failings, Trump has been embraced with open arms by evangelical leaders and followers alike. From boasting about grabbing women “by the pussy” to alleged hush money payments to porn stars, Trump’s track record reads like a manual on how not to embody Christian values while exploiting the faithful.

Yet, in the twisted logic of evangelicalism, Trump is not just forgiven but celebrated as a modern-day warrior for conservative causes. His flagrant disregard for moral standards is conveniently swept under the proverbial church pew, while his political victories are hailed as divine providence. It seems that in the eyes of many evangelicals, the ends justify the means—even if those means involve forsaking any semblance of Christ’s teachings.

The Masculine Mystique: Trump as Evangelical Icon

In the peculiar world of fragile evangelical masculinity, Trump’s brand of machismo is revered as a badge of honor. His sexual exploits, far from being condemned, are twisted into a narrative of virility and strength. In the evangelical playbook, a “real man” is defined not by his character but by his ability to assert dominance and power—qualities that Trump seemingly possesses in spades.

The evangelical obsession with masculinity reaches absurd heights, with leaders and followers alike fawning over Trump’s faux alpha male persona. From his multiple marriages to his infamous affair with Stormy Daniels, Trump’s sexual escapades are not seen as moral failings but as proof of his manliness. In the warped logic of evangelicalism, a man who lusts after power and women is not just forgiven but exalted as a paragon of masculinity.

However, this view starkly contrasts with biblical models of leadership that emphasize virtues like humility, service, and sacrificial love—qualities markedly absent in Trump’s public persona. Figures such as Jesus and Paul model leadership that uplifts the weak and serves the needy, not one that boasts about personal exploits or domination over others. Some contemporary theologians and disillusioned evangelicals criticize this departure, arguing that the church’s endorsement of such behavior betrays its foundational teachings.

Women, Temptresses, and the Evangelical Double Standard

In the patriarchal landscape of evangelicalism, women are cast in a familiar role: that of the temptress, luring men away from the path of righteousness. While men like Trump are given a pass for their sexual indiscretions, women who dare to assert their own agency are condemned as Jezebels and harlots.

The evangelical response to women like Stormy Daniels speaks volumes about the entrenched misogyny within the church. Instead of holding Trump accountable for his actions, evangelical leaders and institutions have rushed to his defense, painting him as the victim of feminine wiles. It’s a narrative as old as time itself: men are the victims of temptation, while women are the architects of sin.

This gender dynamic not only affects public figures but also permeates the everyday experiences of women within the evangelical community. From limited roles in church leadership to the expectation of subservience in marital relationships, the evangelical world often places women in a narrowly prescribed box, stifling their spiritual and personal growth.

A Call to Reflection and Action

In the end, the evangelical embrace of Trump is not just a political alliance but a testament to the church’s moral bankruptcy. By turning a blind eye to Trump’s sins and demonizing women who dare to challenge the status quo, evangelicals have revealed the ugly truth at the heart of their faith: that power trumps morality, and misogyny reigns supreme.

This revelation should not just provoke outrage but also inspire action. It’s time to advocate for a faith that truly reflects the teachings of its Christ—a faith where justice and equality are not just preached but practiced. 

 

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About Stuart Delony
I'm Stuart Delony, your companion on this exploratory journey. As a former pastor now podcast host, I've shifted from sermons to conversations with Snarky Faith, promoting meaningful discussions about life, culture, spirituality. Disheartened by the state of institutionalized Christianity, my aim is to rekindle its foundational principles: love, compassion, and dignity. If you're yearning for change or questioning your faith, you've found a refuge here. You can read more about the author here.
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