Recently, Liberty University’s president Jerry Falwell, Jr., in Trumpesque fashion tweeted, “My good friend @jerryvines just told me Dr. Adam Greenway is a wonderful man and not part of the @drmoore SBC deep state regime trying to subvert the will of the church members! So glad to hear this news! @toddstarnes .”
Falwell is referring to Dr. Russell Moore the president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission. When Trump ran for president Falwell and Moore held conflicting views of Trump.
Moore was highly critical of Trump’s unrepentant admissions of immorality and apparent lack of any sign of Christian character while claiming to be one. He had suggested Trump’s claim of being a Christian is out of political expediency, that he had a mixed track record on the issues concerning evangelicals, and has a host of self-professed moral failings.
Moore remarked, “To back Mr. Trump, these [evangelical] voters must repudiate everything they believe.” That got Moore in some hot water with Trump supporters in the SBC who called for his resignation.
Moore later clarified his comment saying, “There’s a massive difference between someone who enthusiastically excused immorality and someone who felt conflicted, weighted the options based on biblical convictions, and voted their conscience.”
Moore’s honesty about Trump’s immorality must have offended sycophantic supporters like Falwell and he evidently hasn’t forgiven Moore. It is the sort of thing that happens when politics become more important than Christian character.
I do not know what kind of conversations Dr. Jerry Vines and Falwell are having but this is the first time I have heard of the “SBC deep state regime.” Maybe Falwell should clarify what he means by the term “SBC deep state regime.” I have no idea what he is talking about.
A number of evangelicals like Falwell made excuses for Trump’s narcissism and lack of Christian character saying he was just a newborn Christian who needed to mature spiritually, but he should be out of his diapers by now. Trump acts more like a spoiled brat than a babe in Christ.
While several prominent Christian leaders bent over backwards to excuse Trump’s inconsistent claims to Christianity, Russell Moore held Trump accountable. Russell Moore did what any Christian, especially a leader of an ethics commission, should have done.
Christians have a civic responsibility to weigh the political issues in the light of our biblical convictions, and then to vote our conscience, but politics for the Christian were never meant to supplant our primary calling to “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations,” Matthew 28:18.
It seems to me Trump’s spiritual advisors had a responsibility to influence him to live the Christianity he professed, but it looks like Trump has influenced his spiritual advisors to be more like him; tweeting outlandish attacks on those who disagree with them. It makes one wonder who is influencing who? Christians should not sell their evangelical birthright for a single serving of political pottage.
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