The Evangelical Case Against Donald Trump

Since the 2016 Presidential Election, I definitely regret many things. Most of which, the lashing out in anger against Trump, his Nazi administration, and his White Evangelical followers who empowered him.

But all of that anger and frustration is really all in vain. You see, for all of that energy spent, I have gain nothing. I have not done anything significant. Nothing has changed.

Nothing has changed because I haven’t really been about anything significant. To be against something is not really being for anything. To oppose something really isn’t anything. What I need to be about is something that will conquer evil and oppression. And that something is the gospel of Christ.

I have stated many times that racism, bigotry, hatred, xenophobia are not mere social issues that most Evangelicals have grown up falsely believing but are actually antithetical to the gospel of Jesus Christ.

But to say such a thing is to assume that readers here know what is the gospel and why do those things actually oppose it.

What is the gospel of God? Simply stated: the gospel is the power of God in salvation for those who believe. (Romans 1:16)

Yes, the gospel are the words that absolutely declared what God has done and what God will do to save His people to himself. No more and no less.

This goes all the way back Genesis 3 when all of the universe was broken by the mere breaking of God’s law. All things, including mankind, began its descent into chaos and death. But God the Creator, came to mankind and spoke the good news that He himself will reverse this descent and restore all of those things back to himself. This first proclamation of the good news is called the protoevangelium 1. We know that the people whom he preached this news to, Adam and Eve, believed because while they slept, God took away their own works of self-righteousness, slain an animal and spilled its blood (as a foretelling of what would need to happen in order for his people to be saved) and covered Adam and Eve with his own works righteousness 2.

God completes his promise of restoration, goodness, holiness, and perfection by doing the nearly the very same thing later but this time, it was when the Father sent His Son to be slain in His people’s place for their sins. His Son became human, and his name is Jesus Christ, lived a life by the power of the Holy Spirit, gave up his life so that he could die, but by the power of that same Spirit, he arose into life and now He is ascended to the right hand of his Father.

When that happened over two thousand years ago, those people who have come and trust in God to save them, their salvation was completed. Their salvation was finished because what God had promised to do, he alone can finish the work and by the very definition of God, he has to complete the work. He has no choice because He is all powerful and is the only one who can fulfill those promises.

Do you believe and trust in God and what He has done? Then that salvation is for you.

Listen, if you don’t believe, then the gospel is not for you.

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 3

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 4

What the gospel does not contain is any amount of hatred, this includes racism, bigotry, and fear.

We know that God does not save a particular people group, as has so many preachers falsely taught that God will completely save the inhabitants of Israel. When in fact, we look throughout the Bible and we find that God saves only those who came to trust and believed in Him. You are not born into this salvation, whether be by birth or by your will, but by the will of God who saves. 5

So racism cannot be justified by the gospel so it is not part of the gospel. The gospel has no room for such a sin. (We know racism to be a sin. See Numbers 12:1-16)

Bigotry is the intolerance of someone who is different from you or thinks differently from you. Here’s the thing that many churchgoers don’t realize: the gospel is not an answer on a multiple choice test. It is the absolute truth. All of “truths” in the world that differ from this is actually not true. Many people in the world including many people in the church oppose this because we don’t want anybody condemned and we want everyone to have a chance to be saved. But we know that there is no other name by which we are saved 6.  So with that in mind, and in the truest sense off the word, all of those who do not believe God are different from you and they think differently from you. And you want to what? Be intolerant to their existence when in fact, there was a time when you were an enemy and a traitor against the God of the universe?

So that the God of the universe was not intolerant to you, so you should not be intolerant towards others.

“Yes but they are sinning and we shouldn’t associate with sin.” Yes, we shouldn’t associate with sin but we are to love the sinner because they are prisoners are who are held captive in their sin. And you want to kick them out of their church? Where else can they hear of the God who actually saves? Check to see if your church actually preaches the gospel week in and week out. If your church doesn’t preach the gospel, then go ahead and remove such sinners from your church. Without the gospel of Christ preached, there is nothing for their souls there anyways.

So we can clearly see that bigotry is not part of the gospel. The gospel has no room for such sin.

Lastly, we come to xenophobia which is defined as “intense or irrational dislike or fear of people from other countries.” We have seen a hatred against people who are outside this country coming in and we use everything not Biblical to justify our stances. But to know and read the Bible is to know the heart of God for the stranger, the immigrant, the outsider, the alien, the lost. And God loves and cares for them and seeks out to find them and bring them home.

“When a stranger sojourns with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong. You shall treat the stranger who sojourns with you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God. 7

“But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able thus to offer willingly? For all things come from you, and of your own have we given you. For we are strangers before you and sojourners, as all our fathers were. Our days on the earth are like a shadow, and there is no abiding. 8

And for those who say we no longer have to follow the Old Testament, I say this. Literally, this is the parable of the Good Samaritan 9. Like, literally.

In other words, we were once lost but now found. 10

So we can clearly see that xenophobia is not part of the gospel. The gospel has no room for such sin.

So now we see that everything that Donald Trump has stood for—all around hatred—is at complete odds not with society with the gospel and against God himself.

So we can say with the utmost certainty racism, bigotry, hatred, and xenophobia are gospel issues because the Bible makes that painfully clear.

Notes:

  1. Genesis 3:15
  2. Genesis 3:21
  3. Romans 1:16
  4. John 3:16
  5. John 1:12-13, John 3:1-15
  6. Acts 4:12, John 14:6
  7. Leviticus 19:33–34
  8. 1 Chronicles 29:14–15
  9. Luke 25:10-36
  10. Luke 15:1–32

French Liturgy

For you, little child, Jesus Christ has come, he has fought, he has suffered. For you he entered the shadow of Gethsemane and the horror of Calvary. For you he uttered the cry, ‘It is finished!’ For you he rose from the dead and ascended into heaven and there he intercedes — for you, little child, even though you do not know it. But in this way the word of the Gospel becomes true. “We love him, because he first loved us.”

– French Reformed Baptismal Liturgy

The Foot of Faith

“Through him that loved us.” Here is the great secret of our victory, the source of our triumph. Behold the mystery explained, how a weak, timid believer, often running from his own shadow, is yet “more than a conqueror” over his many and mighty foes. To Christ who loved him, who gave himself for him, who died in his stead, and lives to intercede on his behalf, the glory of the triumph is ascribed. And this is the song he chants, “Thanks be to God which gives us the victory through our Lord Jews Christ.” Through the conquest which he himself obtained, through the grace which he imparts, through the strength which he inspires, through the intercession which he presents, in all our “tribulation, and distress, and persecution, and famine, and nakedness, and peril, and sword ” we are “more than conquerors.” Accounted though we are as “sheep for the slaughter,” yet our Great Shepherd, Himself slain for the sheep, guides his flock, and has declared that no one shall pluck them out of his hand. We are more than conquerors through his grace who loved us in the very circumstances that threaten to overwhelm. Fear not, then, the darkest cloud, nor the proudest waves, nor the deepest needs—in these very things you shall, through Christ, prove triumphant. Nor shrink from the battle with the “last enemy.” Death received a death-wound when Christ died. You face a conquered foe. He stands at your side a crownless king, and waving a broken scepter. Your death shall be another victory over the believer’s last foe. Planting your foot of faith upon his prostrate neck, you shall spring into glory, more than a conqueror, through him that loved you. Thus passing to glory in triumph, you shall go to swell the ranks of the “noble army of martyrs”—those Christian heroes of whom it is recorded, “THEY OVERCAME HIM BY THE BLOOD Of THE LAMB.”

No Condemnation in Christ Jesus by Octavius Winslow

His Banner Over Me Is Love

Series: Once a month, I get to teach the Elementary kids during our main Worship Gatherings. My incredible Children’s Pastor, Kim, does the amazing work of feeding me that weekend’s lesson, much like a lectionary. There will be a power verse, the lesson (or the reading) and then the accompanied Bible passage. Quite often, God will linked everything together to His Son and to His gospel which I am to believe the Scriptures (1 Corinthians 2:12) is through the power of the Holy Spirit. Here is a series with my sermon notes for the kiddos.

This week’s lesson: Banners and the Victory of God.

Our power verse was one of Christus Victor found in Psalm 20:5

“May we shout for you over your salvation, and in the name of our God set up our banners!”

In this weekend’s reading, we spoke about the colors of the tabernacle and how that compares to what we know colors to be now. Things like white for purity or gold for holiness. Also, green for life but green for jealousy.

But red. That was the most important. You see, the red came from the blood being spilled on the altar. But it was also the blood of our Saviour on the cross being spilled for the sins of His people.

Here is that distinction: Christ removed your sins and mistakes by his blood on the cross. Do you believe and trust in Jesus? It is here on the cross and Jesus’ blood that God has truly championed over all evil, once and for all.

Let’s look at Exodus 17:8-17

Then Amalek came and fought with Israel at Rephidim. So Moses said to Joshua, “Choose for us men, and go out and fight with Amalek. Tomorrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the staff of God in my hand.” So Joshua did as Moses told him, and fought with Amalek, while Moses, Aaron, and Hur went up to the top of the hill. Whenever Moses held up his hand, Israel prevailed, and whenever he lowered his hand, Amalek prevailed. But Moses’ hands grew weary, so they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it, while Aaron and Hur held up his hands, one on one side, and the other on the other side. So his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. And Joshua overwhelmed Amalek and his people with the sword.

Then the LORD said to Moses, “Write this as a memorial in a book and recite it in the ears of Joshua, that I will utterly blot out the memory of Amalek from under heaven.” And Moses built an altar and called the name of it, The LORD Is My Banner, saying, “A hand upon the throne of the LORD! The LORD will have war with Amalek from generation to generation.”

It is in this Old Testament passage about Moses, Joshua, and war that the Holy Spirit quietly reminded me how Christ did defeat sin, Satan, demons, hell, and death when He went to the cross and died.

Now, let me go off-topic just a tad and explain, “quietly reminded”? It is when His voice is so quiet that He is not even audible in your soul. If I didn’t know better, I would have confused it with my own mind, thoughts, feelings, judgments, or conscience. No. 1 Corinthians 3 declares that all truth is from God. If all of sciences belong to God and his revelations within the scientific realm, how much more when it pertains to His Word and theology and doctrine. Further more, 1 Corinthians 2 says this:

But, as it is written,
“What no eye has seen, nor ear heard,
nor the heart of man imagined,
what God has prepared for those who love him”—

these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. For who knows a person’s thoughts except the spirit of that person, which is in him? So also no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God. And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who are spiritual.

1 Corinthians 2:9-13 ESV

Never do I ever want to think of myself to be so brilliant, wise, and smart to where I think I can come up with this stuff on my own, even it is even worth mentioning. First, I am not that smart. Second, that’s not how it works.

As a teacher of the gospel, I am reminded of a quote: “We know our skills are insufficient for an activity with such vast consequences. We recognize that our hearts are too lacking in purity to lead others to holiness. Honest evaluation inevitably causes us to conclude that we do not have sufficient eloquence, wisdom, or character to be capable of turning others from spiritual death to eternal life. Such a realization can cause young preachers to run from their first preaching assignment and experienced pastors to despair in their pulpits.” 1

I am insufficient for this sort of activity. If not just intellectually, emotionally, or spiritually, but also morally and ethically. What I mean by that is that I would even sometimes sin against God and others like my wife and kids mere moments before teaching kids the gospel. I am woefully unqualified to teach. And so many times, I want to run away because of my failings. But much like Jonah, God brings me back, gives me His Spirit in order to be obedient and faithful to what He has asked me to do. Not only that, to return to those who I have hurt, and repent, and return to Him and ask forgiveness, repent of my sins and His grace and love and mercy is more than enough for me.

You see, all of that is the power of the cross of Christ from the sovereign grace of our Father by the Almighty power of the Holy Spirit.

I ask the kids to stand and stretch out our hands like Moses.

You do the same.

What does that remind you of?

Just like Moses, when Jesus held up his hands on the cross, He was winning over our true enemies of Satan and demons, sin, hell, and death. But unlike Moses, Jesus never let his hands down because they were nailed to the cross.

Christus-VictorAnd you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him. (Colossians 2:13-15 ESV)

While Moses nor Joshua didn’t die in those battles, Exodus 17:17 states they had to fight their enemies “generation after generation”. However, Jesus died once and in his death he put Satan and demons to open shame. In his burial and resurrection, he championed over sin (Romans 6:10), hell, and death (Revelation 11:8) ad he did it once for all (Hebrews 9:23-28).

Notes:

  1. Bryan Chapell, Christ-Centered Preaching: Redeeming the Expository Sermon, 2 edition (Grand Rapids, Mich: Baker Academic, 2005).

Condemnation There Cannot Be

Yet more: Faith is not only the instrument by which we receive a free grace justification, but it harmonizes the outward act of God with the inward feelings of the believing heart. Thus in justification the heart of the Justifier and the heart of the justified beat in the most perfect and holy unison. It is not a stupendous act on the part of God meeting no response on the part of man. Oh no! the believer’s heart flows out in gratitude after God’s heart, traveling towards him in the mightiness and majesty of its saving love; and thus both meet in Christ, the one Mediator between God and man. Here the believer is conscious of a vital union with his justifying Lord. He feels he is one with Christ. The righteousness wrought out, is by faith wrought in, and that faith is the uniting grace of a real, personal union between the justified soul, and a risen, living Savior. “He that is joined to the Lord is one Spirit.” Oh close and blessed union! Justified by God, accepted in Christ, condemnation there cannot be. I stand in the Divine presence as Joshua stood before the Lord, or as the woman stood before the Savior, charged, accused, guilty; but I am in the presence of him who, though now he sits upon the throne as my Judge, once hung upon the cross as my Savior. And, investing me with his own spotless robe, he proceeds to pronounce the sentence—”NO CONDEMNATION!” “These things write I unto you that your joy may be full.” 

No Condemnation in Christ Jesus by Octavius Winslow

The Word Made Flesh

We confess the mystery and wonder
of God made flesh
and rejoice in our great salvation
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

With the Father and the Holy Spirit,
the Son created all things,
sustains all things,
and makes all things new.
Truly God,
He became truly man,
two natures in one person.

He was born of the Virgin Mary
and lived among us.
Crucified, dead, and buried,
He rose on the third day,
ascended to heaven,
and will come again
in glory and judgment.

For us,
He kept the Law,
atoned for sin,
and satisfied God’s wrath.
He took our filthy rags
and gave us
His righteous robe.

He is our Prophet, Priest, and King,
building His church,
interceding for us,
and reigning over all things.

Jesus Christ is Lord;
we praise His holy Name forever.

Amen.

The Word Made Flesh by Ligonier Ministries

The Great God

Nothing too good for thee to give.
Infinite is thy might, boundless thy love,
limitless thy grace, glorious thy saving name.
Let angels sing for
sinners repenting,
prodigals restored,
backsliders reclaimed,
Satan’s captives released,
blind eyes opened,
broken hearts bound up,
the despondent cheered,
the self-righteous stripped,
the formalist driven from a refuge of lies,
the ignorant enlightened,
and saints built up in their holy faith.
I ask great things of a great God.

– from The Great God
The Valley of Vision

Now Sings My Soul; Psalm 21

My Lord and My God,

My focus is far from you, the one who sets up Kings and puts them down.

I have been distracted by the choosing of kings rather to place my focus on the King of kings.

It is in you, O Lord, where my strength resides
my salvation is present
my heart’s desire
my soul’s fulfillment.

Be my provision. Be my grace. Be my mercy.

Be my life. Be my zeal. Be my might.

Be my glory.

Bless me, O Lord.

Smile upon me.

Help me to trust in you, your faithfulness, and your steadfast love.

Hold me in your hands.

Protect me from the enemy of my soul.

My life is yours, O God. I love you with all of my heart.

Amen.