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Bill Muehlenberg's commentary on issues of the day...

Trump and Christianity Today

Dec 21, 2019

Thoughts on Trump and CT:

By now most of you would have heard how the leading evangelical magazine in America, Christianity Today, has editorialised that Christians cannot and should not support the President. Its Editor-in-Chief Mark Galli said that “Trump Should Be Removed from Office.” www.christianitytoday.com/ct/2019/december-web-only/trump-s hould-be-removed-from-office.html

While many experts would still argue that the actual evidence behind the calls for his impeachment is not fully clear, Galli seems quite certain about it all: “But the facts in this instance are unambiguous: The president of the United States attempted to use his political power to coerce a foreign leader to harass and discredit one of the president’s political opponents. That is not only a violation of the Constitution; more importantly, it is profoundly immoral.”

So he has acted as judge, jury and executioner here, fully buying the stance of the Democrats on this situation – even though the final political and legal word on all this still seems to be forthcoming. So what are we to make of all this? Let me begin by stating that Trump was most certainly not my choice four years ago – as many of you well know.

Indeed, I lost many friends over my stance back then. I won’t repeat everything I said at the time, but it concerned me greatly that so much of his life had not been about endorsing consistent and constitutional conservatism; much of the time he was not even a Republican; he liked to call folks like the Clintons his buddies; etc. With other more worthy candidates such as Ted Cruz around, I did not prefer to run with Trump.

But he is now President and I certainly am glad Hillary is not in the White House. And he has done better in many regards than what I and a lot of other critics thought possible. Sure, he has been a mixed bag: for example, he has done quite well on the prolife issues, but not as well on all things homosexual.

Appointing heaps of conservative judges – not least of which a few SCOTUS justices – is certainly a hugely important achievement. And the economy is of course booming with unemployment rates being well down. And given the current crop of hyper-left Democrat challengers for the top job next year, how could any conservative – and even any Christian – not prefer him to those leftist loons?

So yes, I want him around, and I want him to win a second term. And all that the Democrat circus about impeachment – and all the other nonsense about Russia, collusion, and so on – has done is to drive even more folks to Trump. Just as Boris won big in the UK, I expect the Donald to win even bigger in 2020.

Thus while I still believe that character counts, and Trump is far from ideal in many ways, the current round of Democrat opposition is so appallingly bad that Trump is our only real option. If Christianity Today was really concerned about him, they could have said much more earlier on. Timing this editorial with the Democrat witch-hunt seems a bit dodgy to be honest.

I am not alone in my concerns. Various Christian leaders have also weighed in on this. Focus on the Family founder James Dobson said this:

I have read a new editorial published by Christianity Today that promotes impeachment of President Donald Trump. The editors didn’t tell us who should take his place in the aftermath. Maybe the magazine would prefer a president who is passionately pro-abortion, anti-family, hostile to the military, dispassionate toward Israel, supports a socialist form of government, promotes confiscatory taxation, opposes school choice, favors men in women’s sports and boys in girl’s locker rooms, promotes the entire LGBTQ agenda, opposes parental rights, and distrusts evangelicals and anyone who is not politically correct. By the way, after Christianity Today has helped vacate the Oval Office, I hope they will tell us if their candidate to replace Mr. Trump will fight for religious liberty and the Bill of Rights? Give your readers a little more clarity on why President Trump should be turned out of office after being duly elected by 63 million voters? Is it really because he made a phone call that displeased you? There must be more to your argument than that. While Christianity Today is making its case for impeachment, I hope the editors will now tell us who they support for president among the Democrat field. That should tell us the rest of the story. christiannewswire.com/news/4551683350.html

Franklin Graham also expressed his concerns:

Christianity Today released an editorial stating that President Trump should be removed from office—and they invoked my father’s name (I suppose to try to bring legitimacy to their statements), so I feel it is important for me to respond. Yes, my father Billy Graham founded Christianity Today; but no, he would not agree with their opinion piece. In fact, he would be very disappointed. I have not previously shared who my father voted for in the past election, but because of this article, I feel it is necessary to share it now. My father knew Donald Trump, he believed in Donald Trump, and he voted for Donald Trump. He believed that Donald J. Trump  was the man for this hour in history for our nation.

For Christianity Today to side with the Democrat Party in a totally partisan attack on the President of the United States is unfathomable. Christianity Today failed to acknowledge that not one single Republican voted with the Democrats to impeach the President. I know a number of Republicans in Congress, and many of them are strong Christians. If the President were guilty of what the Democrats claimed, these Republicans would have joined with the Democrats to impeach him. But the Democrats were not even unanimous—two voted against impeachment and one voted present [voted neither for nor against]. This impeachment was politically motivated, 100% partisan. Why would Christianity Today choose to take the side of the Democrat left whose only goal is to discredit and smear the name of a sitting president? They want readers to believe the Democrat leadership rather than believe the President of the United States.

Look at all the President has accomplished in a very short time. The economy of our nation is the strongest it has been in 50 years, ISIS & the caliphate have been defeated, and the President has renegotiated trade deals to benefit all Americans. The list of accomplishments is long, but for me as a Christian, the fact that he is the most pro-life president in modern history is extremely important—and Christianity Today wants us to ignore that, to say it doesn’t count? The President has been a staunch defender of religious freedom at home and around the world—and Christianity Today wants us to ignore that? Also the President has appointed conservative judges in record number—and Christianity today wants us to ignore that? Christianity Today feels he should be removed from office because of false accusations that the President emphatically denies.

Christianity Today said it’s time to call a spade a spade. The spade is this—Christianity Today has been used by the left for their political agenda. It’s obvious that Christianity Today has moved to the left and is representing the elitist liberal wing of evangelicalism.

Is President Trump guilty of sin? Of course he is, as were all past presidents and as each one of us are, including myself. Therefore, let’s pray for the President as he continues to lead the affairs of our nation. www.facebook.com/FranklinGraham/posts/2925457574177071

Robert Gagnon minced no words on this. Here is one of several strong social media comments he made:

Is there anything more delusional than the belief of Mark Galli of Christianity Today that the Left will take more seriously Evangelical positions on abortion, “LGBTQ” coercion, and the curtailment of free speech and the free exercise of religion if only we support Trump’s removal from office? The Left hates us *precisely because* we oppose these things. Their visceral hatred of Trump stems first and foremost from his failure to advance wholeheartedly their most cherished and defining agendas. Does Mark Galli honestly think that the Democratic Party will be amenable to putting restrictions on abortion and cease pushing for the most draconian “Equality” Act that they can pass to impose the homosexualist and transgender agenda if only we back their efforts to remove Trump from office?

Others have also shared their misgivings about this. Many have wondered about the leftward direction of Christianity Today over the years. This just seems to be another clear indication of such a move. But anything that makes it easier for one of the present bunch of Democrats to get into office is certainly not something any conservative can approve of, nor something any concerned biblical Christian can run with as well.

Graham is right: please keep praying for the President. He sure can use our prayers. And unless some sort of decent Democrat challenger rolls up real soon (not too likely), pray for a major Trump re-election victory next year.

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23 Responses to Trump and Christianity Today

  • Hi Bill, I’m with you all the way on this one. Is “The Donald” a ratbag? He most certainly is. However, he is a ratbag being used by God for His Agenda. Trump’s election to the White House not only affects Americans, it indirectly affects all of us. Whether you call him a ratbag or a modern day “King Cyrus”, it’s up to ALL of us to keep praying for him and his administration, that God’s will be done! Great article Bill, blessings, Kel.

  • I agree, especially about Clinton not being President. If by any means Trump does cease to be President, then Mike Pence would become President. I’d like to see what sort of man he really is when not hiding behind Trump.

  • Hi Bill,
    Thanks for this article. I have been saying some of the same things for the last few days in regard to Christianity Today, as you know. I am particularly grateful for the full statement made by Franklin Graham and by James Dobson.

    Keep on keeping on. I’ll be saying it again, but I’ll say it now – Have a Merry Christmas. God bless you and strengthen you as we celebrate the most wonderful birth in history.

  • Hello Bill, the thing we have to remember with Donald Trump is he became a Christian shortly before taking the office of Presidency. When one reads the Bible, if we are to judge those men, none of them would stand up to high standards except for Daniel and a few others. Most of our Biblical great leaders were great sinners right down to the beloved apostle Paul. When Donald Trump won the presidency & I heard about it around 10pm at night I fell to my knees weeping I was so happy because I knew the tyranny the Lord had just saved us from – possibly FEMA camps & the 30,000 guillotines that are here in America. I did vote for Mr. Trump for a lot of very good reasons – mostly His pro life stand. And now that he is in he has outdone any expectations I had for him and I thank the Lord daily for this mighty man of God. I also have great respect for Ted Cruz & hope someday to see him in office.

  • Thanks, Bill. I could have written those exact words. I feel the same way exactly.

  • One of the problems is that many denominations have become very liberal. Here in the NZ Baptists we have become very liberal. Most of our top leaders and academics would follow the Christianity today line. Can’t stand Pres Trump, open borders, equality of outcome, race relations, gender equality – our guys are all in.

    For myself I’m a Christian conservative who likes Pres Trump, believes in freedom and thinks the biblical view as handed down by the apostles is the way to go.

    Sadly many of our Baptist leaders have social views synonymous with the leader of the Labour Party. Which is sad IMHO.

    I think James Dobson of Focus on the family said it best. Donald Trump promised to protect religious freedom and the sanctity of the unborn child. Hillary Clinton promised she would not.

  • Show me a president that is perfect and I will show you, Jesus. Like many cases of government, God chooses a man for the hour. I believe that Johnson of the UK, as well as Trump, are such men. Perfection is not on the agenda with God as we see so often in scripture. David was a murderer. One might say Trump was the best of a bad bunch. And until a better comes along, count your blessings because you definitely won’t get better from the Demoncrats.

  • Galli is either a gullible fool who like the Dems chooses to ignore the evidence and due process, or he has become a shill for the liberal left. It is not possible to placate the socialist liberal elite for they hate everything that we stand for – you cannot reason with such stupidity for it is self-righteous in it’s belief that conservatism and Christianity as revealed in the bible needs to die. Galli has definitely disrespected the principles of the founder of Christianity Today.

  • Dear Bill. “Donald Trump is God’s wrecking Ball.” This was said to me as Trump became President of the USA to which I have agreed for 3 years. I look forward to hearing more about what God will do in the coming years. God bless you and all the family. My wife and I will continue to pray every day for you.

  • Bill,
    Galli is acting like God. How do you know Trump has not already confessed his past sins and asked for forgiveness? You are the reason the church has turned into a theatrical production every Sunday blowing the trumpet for sexual perverts and the slaughtering of millions of babies because the church has no guts to call these groups out and depending on the book of revelations, hoping the end is near.The church has become the conduit for the devil.

  • Christianity Today has long leaned left and is well-known by Christian apologists as “Christianity Astray.” They’ve just proven it again.

  • God told us that nations that promote things like homosexuality are defiled, so it should not surprise us when things like this happen and, of course, Donald Trump only became U.S. President because he was the only Republican candidate that was happy with homosexual marriage. Australia, too, is in the process of being defiled and is in desperate need of repentance and the U.K. has gone absurdly that direction with an estimated 8% of parliamentarians there being homosexuals. The West is going downhill at an astoundingly fast rate just as God told us thousands of years ago.

    Having said that, I have read the transcripts of the conversation of D.T with the Ukrainian President and this whole issue is very obvious captious nonsense, blown massively out of proportion. Fundamental to democracy is obviously the adversarial approach to politics. To think that it is wrong for any politician to accept evidence of wrongdoing about the opposition party from any source is patent absurdity and profoundly antidemocratic. It is irrelevant that the source is a foreign leader. If opposing political parties are prevented from investigating wrongdoing in the opposing party then we are doomed because there will be absolutely no one left to do this and we will be left with the tyrannical/socialist situation where politicians are above the law. That, of course, is what the U.S. Democratic party is promoting but, fortunately for the U.S. there are enough people in the U.S. who see the need to “drain the swamp” and bring the nation back to a just, reasonable and an openly-democratic, functional basis where politicians are not above investigation.

    Add to this the Democrat’s propensity to bring economic power to bear on foreign governments to promote abortion, homosexuality and globalism while simultaneously ignoring wrong doing in places like China plus their obvious promotion of foreign socialist governments to openly comment and bring pressure to bear against the Republican Party, and the profound hypocrisy of the sham impeachment becomes massively evident. It is political farce at its most profound.

    That Christians are so easily swayed, as the author of the C.T. article clearly was, is a massive shame because Christians are meant to be founded on the rock and not so easily swayed by every “wind of doctrine.”

  • Hi Bill, thank you for a timely observation of ”left” leaning worldwide Christian editors from even more left publications masquerading as ”Christian magazines”.

    We have ”Eternity” new that has the same problem, standing up for political correctness and jargon, I take it too serve two masters at the same time!

    I stopped reading ”Christianity Today’s” articles a long time ago, as I found it wandering when it came to Christian conviction authoring!

    I rather read your excellent daily articles with up to date authority written articles, standing up for Jesu Christ! Thank you again, Bill, and Merry Blessed Christmas, with the hope and prayer for an exciting New Year, to your family and your many readers around the world

    Cheers & Blessings

    Eric Hansen

  • I was a Cruz man myself during the primaries but when Trump got the nomination I backed him and voted for him. Only the band of God could explain his rise from the pack to win. Much in the same manner as Reagan.

    I think one thing that makes the democrats even more unhinged now is we aren’t falling for their usual tactics – name calling, intimidation, etc – we aren’t letting these things get to us any more so they are getting desperate. Also we aren’t buying their phony “deals” any more – give us this and we’ll work with you on something you want – since we know those are lies.

  • God Bless The United States of America and God Bless its President Donald Trump.

  • Deeply disturbing is THE TRUTH in all this, of which the vast majority of people – who hear the news in snippets through the left-wing mainstream media – are unaware.

    The Democrats made clear from the outset their determination to attempt to destroy President Trump.
    https://thefederalist.com/2019/11/01/house-democrats-were-always-going-to-impeach-president-trump/

    19 minutes after President Trump’s inauguration, the Washington Post reported that the Democrats were planning to impeach the President.

    Five months ago, in July this year, the Democrats called to impeach President Trump.

    The telephone call used as the reason for impeachment did not happen until more than a week after the Democrats’ call to impeach President Trump.

    The Democrats’ stated reasons for impeaching the President are abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.

    The hypocrisy, corruption and flagrant projection in this are breath-taking, for it is in fact the Democrats who are abusing their power and obstructing justice.

    The Democrats are not allowing the impeach vote to go to the Senate, where they know it would be thrown out immediately on a vote (or alternatively it would go to a trial, where witnesses would be called from both sides).

    The Democrats are accusing the President of asking the Ukraine President to investigate corruption in Burisma, a large business in the Ukraine. Former US Vice-President Joe Biden’s inexperienced son, who was on the Burisma board, had overlooked this corruption.

    The Democrats were counting on President Trump not releasing the transcript of his conversation with the Ukraine President. But Trump has released the transcript, and it refutes the Democrats’ accusations. Also, the Ukraine President has stated emphatically that he has no problem at all with his interaction and conversation with President Trump.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donald_Trump#Impeachment
    (read section on impeachment)

    Mr Galli, very disturbingly you have highlighted your bias and disdain for truth. The honourable thing would be that you step down rather than abusing your influence to mislead your readers, to promote disrespect, to cause strife and to destroy. To use your own words: Christianity Today’s Editor-in-Chief, Mark Galli, should be removed from office – on the basis of misuse of power and influence, which in your words is ‘profoundly immoral’!

  • Hi Bill,
    Firstly a big thanks for another year of quality publishing. I in most cases support your point of view and 100% admire your continuous and detailed analysis. Merry Christmas.

    Secondly, I fully support the case that President Trump is not perfect, but neither was King David. The democrats never accepted the election result and as detailed above, the Washington Post reported that the Democrats were planning to impeach the President. So this strategy has been in force for many months. For the Editor-in-Chief, Mark Galli to be so seriously and foolishly manipulated by the Left MSM is quite disturbing. The question obvious question is : Does Mr Galli actually know what is going on.

    There is a lot more behind the scenes to this Trump impeachment farce that meets the eye , as this article clearly discusses.

    https://halturnerradioshow.com/index.php/en/news-page/news-nation/democrats-stole-billions-in-us-aid-to-ukraine-laundered-it-to-themselves-trying-to-impeach-trump-to-stop-investigation

    Amazing that Hillary Clinton’s history doesn’t seem to be of any concern to “Christianity Today.” What does this say about the editorial integrity of the magazine?

    God Bless,
    Phil

  • Hi Bill, I am glad that you wrote your analysis. In spite of all his weaknesses, I think God is playing a big role in his administration. I don’t think Cyrus of Isaiah 45 was a righteous man, but God used him for His purposes. Albert

  • A good article, Bill. I agree. Mark Galli is like so many leaders of Christian institutions in the west–they have abandoned the faith. Not much is different from the Apostle Paul’s time. I agree with Scott Lelievre that many denominations and Christian institutions have become very liberal. How can it be turned around? The ‘church’ is in a precarious place when its leaders have become a fifth column.

  • Christianity Today should be recaptioned – Christianity Lost – gone into the proverbial swamp created by our modern King Cyrus – Trump
    The changes we see in the weather are more related to the spiritual climate of this country in continual denial of God’s Truth and Word.
    When a nation legalises killing and S.S.M. (how DARE they!) we can expect a backlash from our heavenly Father as we re no longer under His law and commandment but our own man made laws to suit ourselves.
    I fear that unless there is nationwide repentance for this heinous sin, the bushfires will keep burning .
    Whatever you do Bill, – dont take a holiday in Hawaii as we need you here to keep the homefires burning . You bless thousands of us true believers with your courageous forthtelling and opposition to the lying Leftists.
    God bless you and your family in the coming year and years.
    Elizabeth Gwilt.

  • Thanks Bill. Now that Grudem has weighed in to the subject it just amazes (and saddens) me how Christians behave in public discussion. In twitter, one calls his writing “vapid and asinine” and another says of his systematic theology “garbage”. This is sad. All of this because he is pro Trump? Do they prefer Hillary instead? They should be reminded that they’re discussing about a president, not a pastor or seminary dean. And try short term missions sometimes and see the world. The real one.

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