Over the last few weeks I have been reading and hearing all kinds of things about the upcoming elections. Much of what has been said is in regards to Republican candidate Donald Trump. I have heard and read what many conservative Christians have said, ranging from full fledged support bordering on hero worship of Trump, to judgment and disgust that any Christian could even think of voting for an immoral man such as Trump. I did not vote for Trump in the primaries, and I believe that there were better candidates out there. This however is what we have. I usually keep my political thoughts to myself, mainly because I know my tendency to speak without thinking sometimes, and I want to avoid saying or posting something I will regret. However, on this particular subject, I feel the importance is such that I will weigh in, and do my best to do so in a gentle and compassionate way. Here are my thoughts on a couple of the big talking points having to do with the elections and Donald Trump.
- Donald Trumps immorality/failed marriages and lewd comments regarding women. Let me start by saying, that I am pretty sure that if there were recordings of everything we said and thought from 11 years ago, there would be something for each of us that not only would we be embarrassed to have made public, but that would also shock and appall the people around us that we could think or say something like that. Trumps lifestyle and words are inexcusable, and must be recognized for what they are – sin. Both Donald Trump and I will one day stand before God and have to give account of our lives, and he will be judged for his actions just as I will be judged for mine. However, let us be careful about getting up on our high horse and throwing judgments of condemnation at people before we have examined our own lives to see if we are being the person and leader in our sphere of influence that we should be. Also, let us be sure that we are not hypocritical in our “outrage.” It is easy to condemn the immoral actions and words of a man, and be sure everyone knows how wicked we think he is and how we are going to separate ourselves from him and condemn those things by not voting for him. Do your daily habits activities and habits demonstrate that same level of piety though? What about your movie and TV watching habits though? What websites are you visiting? What does your Netflix queue show? If you are going to be appalled at Trumps immorality why are you watching Game of Thrones? If his comments about women were so repulsive, why did you watch or read Fifty Shades of Grey? If his crude jokes and expletives really offended you, then why are you watching the Hangover movies, or the Deadpool movie? Let us be sure we are consistent in our standards.
I have heard many people defend their decision to vote for Donald Trump based on the fact that God uses flawed individuals in the Bible, many times pointing to David, an adulterer and murderer, as an example of a flawed individual that God used. Now let me say, that it is indisputable that God uses flawed individuals. If He didn’t, He would never be able to use anyone, because we are all flawed individuals. However, there is a problem in comparing Donald Trump to David as flawed leaders that God used greatly, and that is that David expressed clear repentance for his grave sins. (Psalm 51) This is not something that I have seen consistently demonstrated from Donald Trump. Although he did not seek to defend his comments from 11 years ago, and openly stated that he was wrong to say those things, he has also said that he has never had to ask forgiveness for anything. This is not consistent with the life of David, a godly yet flawed leader. I believe it is consistent with another very flawed leader that God used to bring Israel out of a time of great oppression – Samson. If you are not familiar with his story beyond that he was really strong and had awesome hair (trust me the irony of that second part is not lost on me) read it in Judges 13-16. To give you the rundown though, Samson was involved in at least 3 immoral relationships, and never once demonstrated an attitude of repentance for those actions. He was a very self centered individual, and many times the heroic deeds he did against the oppressors (the Philistines) were done because they had done something that offended him personally, and often behaved like a petulant child. In fact his final most heroic deed was to sacrifice himself by destroying the temple of Dagon, taking thousands of Philistines with him, and he states the reason for this action in Judges 16:28. “O Lord God, remember me, I pray thee, and strengthen me, I pray thee, only this once, O God, that I may be at once avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes.” This flawed and unrepentant individual is listed in Hebrews 11 alongside such heroes of the faith as Abraham, Moses, and Samuel. This is not to excuse Samson’s actions, nor to say that God excused Samson’s actions, but he was clearly God’s man, chosen and used despite his selfish and unrepentant attitude.
- I am voting for Trump’s policies, not for his lifestyle. Although I wish that Donald Trump was a godly Christian man, my concern has more to do with his policies than with his lifestyle. Again, I am not excusing his lifestyle, but what he does and what he says will be judged by God, I am not responsible for his actions. I am however responsible for my actions, and to try to impact my country and culture by being the most godly citizen I can be. Although I agree with most of Trump’s policies when compared to Hilary’s policies, there are two that I believe are of vital importance to Christians, and are truly issues of morality: Abortion and the Supreme Court.
I don’t have the time here to go into all the specifics of policies, but suffice it to say that Trump stands much stronger for the rights of the unborn, than does Hilary. James 4:17 tells all Christians that “To him that knoweth to do good and doeth it not, to him it is sin.” Isaiah 1:17 tells God’s people to “Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge [treat justly] the fatherless, plead for the widow.” Whether you want to categorize the unborn as the oppressed or the fatherless is up to you, but regardless it is my responsibility as a Christian to do my best to fight for the rights of these helpless individuals. If I do not vote at all, I am not fighting at all, and if I vote third party I am making it easier for Hilary to be elected, and therefore in my opinion, I am not fighting as effectively for those innocent unborn children as I could be. I am not as concerned about gun control, immigration, and jobs, although I have an opinion on each of those issues, but on the issue of abortion, I believe it is the responsibility of each Christian to fight for the rights of those who are unable to fight for their own rights and life.
On the issue of the Supreme Court, it seems very likely that the next president could appoint at least 3 judges to the supreme court. Clear biblical and moral issues are at stake here, issues such as abortion, marriage, and religious freedom. The judges that Hilary will appoint will undoubtedly send America further on the road to the liberal agenda. The judges that Trump says he will appoint would be conservative voices that we hope would point us back toward conservative values and Biblical morality.
People say that they don’t know if they can trust Trump to do what he says. The truth is that I don’t know for sure if I can trust Trump in what he says. I find it a distinct possibility that every politician will do differently to what they say. He might get elected and do things completely opposite to what he says, and he might not defend the unborn, he might appoint liberal judges, he might not defend religious freedom. That is on him, not me. I know I cannot trust Hilary. I know what Hilary will do. I know she will not defend the unborn, I know she will appoint liberal judges who will seek to further corrupt the sanctity of marriage, and who will seek to further oppress religious freedom. I know she will push her liberal agenda across all facets of government. Trump says he will defend the unborn and will appoint conservative judges. I have to accept what he says, and do whatever I can to further these two crucial issues of morality. If he goes back on his word, he will answer to God for those things, not me. By the same token, if I do not do everything in my power to defend the unborn and to stand by the truth of God’s Word in relation to marriage, I too will answer to God. For that reason, although he is not perfect, and though I may not even like him that much, I will vote for Trump.