Syndicated columnist Michael Gerson bemoans what he considers the hypocrisy of his fellow evangelicals in selling their souls to support President Donald Trump in a cover story for The Atlantic.
Calling the fact that Trump won four-fifth of the votes of white evangelical Christians "one of the most extraordinary developments of recent political history," Gerson noted that this was a higher level obtained by either Ronald Reagan or George W. Bush, who was an outspoken evangelical himself.
Gerson said that "Trump's background and beliefs could hardly be more incompatible with traditional Christian models of life and leadership" and his values are distinctly non-Christian.
"Trump's unapologetic materialism — his equation of financial and social success with human achievement and worth — is a negation of Christian teaching. His tribalism and hatred for 'the other' stand in direct opposition to Jesus's radical ethic of neighbor love. Trump's strength-worship and contempt for 'losers' smack more of Nietzsche than of Christ."
Gerson calls it "utter corruption" the way in which evangelical leaders have allowed their moral convictions to become a function of their partisan identification.
He slams these leaders for being so "blinded by political tribalism and hatred for their political opponents," that they "can't see how they are undermining the causes to which they once dedicated their lives."
Gerson writes that "the corruption of a political party is regrettable. The corruption of a religious tradition by politics is tragic, shaming those who participate in it."
What makes it even worse for him to digest is that "it is difficult to see something you so deeply value discredited so comprehensively. Evangelical faith has shaped my life, as it has the lives of millions. Evangelical history has provided me with models of conscience.
"Evangelical institutions have given me gifts of learning and purpose. Evangelical friends have shared my joys and sorrows. And now the very word is brought into needless disrepute."
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