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Thursday, January 14, 2021

'How Did We Get Here?' A Call For An Evangelical Reckoning On Trump

Rachel Martin
Originally poste 13 Jan 202

Here is an excerpt:

You write that Trump has burned down the Republican Party. What has he done to the evangelical Christian movement?

If you asked today, "What's an evangelical?" to most people, I would want them to say: someone who believes Jesus died on the cross for our sin and in our place and we're supposed to tell everyone about it. But for most people they'd say, "Oh, those are those people who are really super supportive of the president no matter what he does." And I don't think that's what we want to be known for. That's certainly not what I want to be known for. And I think as this presidency is ending in tatters as it is, hopefully more and more evangelicals will say, "You know, we should have seen earlier, we should have known better, we should have honored the Lord more in our actions these last four years."

Should ministers on Sunday mornings be delivering messages about how to sort fact from fiction and discouraging their parishioners from seeking truth in these darkest corners of the Internet peddling lies?

Absolutely, absolutely. Mark Noll wrote years ago a book called The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind, and he was talking about the lack of intellectual engagement in some corners of evangelicalism.

I think the scandal of the evangelical mind today is the gullibility that so many have been brought into — conspiracy theories, false reports and more — and so I think the Christian responsibility is we need to engage in what we call in the Christian tradition, discipleship. Jesus says, "I am the way, the truth and the life." So Jesus literally identifies himself as the truth; therefore, if there ever should be a people who care about the truth, it should be people who call themselves followers of Jesus.