We’ve been bombarded with coverage of the unprecedented worldwide protests following the inauguration of Donald J. Trump. But the largest march—the one primarily responsible for that ceremony—has received little mention: Millions of Evangelical Christians defiantly declared their independence from Jesus’s teachings, and it’s as if no one noticed.
Maybe it wasn’t newsworthy. After all, Christians haven’t been followers of Jesus for centuries. However, they do like being seen carrying a Bible to church, prominently displaying images of a non-Semitic Jesus, and they have a macabre practice of adorning their homes, churches and necks with the weapon that murdered him.
But like grinning all the time, it was inauthentic and exhausting; so they stopped. Throughout campaign season, they openly embraced values that are the antithesis of Jesus’s: hatred, misogyny, racism and xenophobia. They opted to build a wall around themselves. And rejected Jesus’s directive to care for “the least of these.”
According to Pew Research, 80 percent of self-identified white, born-again/evangelical Christians who voted and 52% of Catholics who voted say they cast their ballot for Trump—the proudly vindictive, misogynistic serial adulterer and KKK-supported cyberbully who urged violence against members of Jesus’s human family at his rallies. Their affinity for him reveals six things about Christians.
1. Christians don’t ask, “What Would Jesus Do?”
Our assumptions about Christians defy actual facts. Not only do they reject Jesus’s teachings, they are outright hostile toward them. In elementary school, these Christians would not have voted a think-skinned, petulant kid who reveled in name-calling and poked fun at other kids’ physical appearance as their eighth-grade class president. He’d be considered unsuitable to represent the class. As adult Christians, he is their ideal representative.
2. Christians don’t have to be followers of Jesus
For years, I have made a distinction between Christlike and Christian: The former describes how a person behaves; the latter merely describes what a person believes. You don’t have to respect, obey or follow Jesus’s teachings to be a Christian. You simply have to hold some core beliefs:
- A human being can be conceived without human sperm fertilizing a human egg.
- God will not forgive the guilty unless an innocent son is heinously tortured to death; i.e., God is not the unconditionally forgiving father portrayed in Jesus’s “Prodigal Son” parable.
- Jesus’s purpose for coming to Earth was to be brutally murdered for sins committed by others—before, during and after his lifetime here.
- God will sadistically torture us throughout all eternity if we do not acknowledge that Jesus was murdered for what we did, express gratitude for his murder, and proclaim that Jesus saved us from God’s demonic, unending punishment.
- Jesus’s body ascended into outer space without the aid of a projectile, pressurized aircraft or spacesuit.
3. Jesus’s followers don’t have to be Christians
Jesus’s followers don’t have to share these beliefs. Punctuating that, I was given a palm card at the Women’s March in Chicago that read, “Love Trumps Fear.” It was distributed by Jews for Jesus—and reminds us that Jesus was born Jewish and dubbed “King of the Jews” by his Roman murderers.
- Love one another, be kind to one another, forgive others as God has forgiven you (John 15:12); i.e. God is the unconditionally forgiving father portrayed in Jesus’s Prodigal Son parable.
- Love your enemies. Live peaceably with all. Do not be vengeful. (Luke 6:27, Romans 12:17)
- Treat others as you’d want to be treated. (Luke 6:31, Matthew 7:12, Philippians 2:4)
- Show compassion for all and help them: the poor, despised, and outcasts. (Matt. 4:24-25)
- “Be sincere, not a hypocrite” (Matt. 6:1-6)
Followers of Jesus consciously strive to live by these tenets, as evidenced in the massive protest marches in various parts of the world. But for Christians, treating others equitably—or only saying and doing thing to others that you would want said or done to you—is scornfully dismissed as “politically correctness.”
4. Christians hate political correctness
Christians want to say whatever, insult whomever and do whatever they desire to those who don’t look like, act like or think like them and, of course, those who are less privileged. They don’t care that Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” (Matthew 25:40) because they are not followers of Jesus.
5. Christians disrespect or distort Jesus’s lessons on karma
In Luke 6:37 and Matthew 7:1-3, Jesus reportedly admonished us against creating bad karma: “Judge not, lest ye be judged,” he said. “Condemn not, lest ye be condemned.” Translated: Whatever you do will be done to you.
Christians often quoted that admonition to excuse themselves from acknowledging facts about Donald Trump. “The Bible says that we shouldn’t judge!” they proclaimed.
But facts are not judgments: Trump is a serial adulterer. Fact. He has been sued by dozens of small business owners for not paying their invoices. Fact. He was sued by a woman who claimed he raped her when she was a teen. Fact. His foundation admitted to spending $20,000 on a portrait of Trump and $250,000 to settle private legal disputes, in violation of IRS rules. Fact. He’s taken six corporate bankruptcies. Fact. He boasted of grabbing women’s genitals. Fact. He settled a civil fraud claim brought by 6,000 alleged victims for $25 million. Fact.
These are facts, not judgments. But none of these facts cost him Evangelical Christians’ support.
6. God giveth free will; Christians taketh away
Contrasted to Followers of Jesus, Christians want to be the boss of every body, particularly women’s. Evangelical Christians and Catholics, in particular, are obsessed with forcing women to give birth to unwanted children. Many cited this as the reason they voted for Trump, who was pro-choice until it was politically expedient to be pro-birth.
This is not a pro-life issue. Notably, once fetuses breathe on their own, faith leaders and their flocks are not interested in their lives. Perhaps they should stick around to witness the results of their strong-arm tactics:
At least they’re consistent. These are the same folks who willingly endangered the lives and freedoms of God’s Jewish, Muslim, LGBTQ, Native American, Mexican and African-American children with their votes—further proving they are not “pro-life,” simply pro-mandatory birth. If you already have a body, they could not care less.
Winners never cheat; cheaters never win
Take young Cameron Harris, a recent college grad who, according to this New York Times story, parlayed the $5 he paid for the “Christian Times Newspaper” domain into $22,000, by unscrupulously publishing fake news stories that supported Donald Trump’s narrative.
After Trump claimed during a campaign stop in Ohio that the election was rigged against him, Harris diabolically wrote and published a story claiming that an electrical worker had stumbled upon “tens of thousands” of fraudulent Clinton votes in a Columbus, Ohio warehouse.
Compounding his deceit, Harris added a photo of a guy behind stacks of bins marked “ballot box.” But he didn’t mention that the man and the ballots were in Great Britain. The story was eventually shared by six million people, worldwide.
After Harris was unmasked, he was fired by Maryland lawmaker David Vogt. Chances are, he will be welcomed into another political camp that appreciates his diabolical immorality.
Christians have shown us that the simply want to win. Even if they have to cheat. Whether by concocting fake news or drastically gerrymandering legislative districts to favor their party. When intelligence officials revealed that Russia had manipulated the outcome of the election, Christians weren’t alarmed that America is now a pawn for the Kremlin. They followed their leader beyond disrespecting U.S. intelligence community, and straight into denial.
And finally, the elephant in the room
Christians mouth the words that we are all children of God; but they voluntarily joined the same voting bloc as the KKK. They also knew Trump was being counseled by a reputed white supremacist, and had attracted the enthusiastic support of white nationalists. They’d heard Trump’s blatantly racist challenge to the legitimacy of Barack Obama’s presidency, falsely claiming that Obama was not born in America—another insult to the intelligence officers who vetted him. The government had access to Obama’s late mother’s passport records, which revealed where she was on his birth date.
Beyond normalizing hatred, Trump’s candidacy and electoral victory turned up the volume on hate speech and unleashed hate crimes against other Americans. Apparently, it was simply waiting for a golden calf to set it free. And it fled into Christians’ open arms.
Jesus’s teachings can be our guide
Let’s bid a fond farewell to our Christian comrades, as they march into the Siberian wilderness, following a leader with a gyrating moral compass. May they find what they are looking for—and may we respect their choice, while making every effort to protect our rights and our freedom.
Thanks to them, millions of Americans fear for their safety because of the occupant of the White House. As these Christians march off into the dark side of history, consciously trampling Jesus’s teachings, immorally attacking humans’ God-given sexual orientation, usurping a woman’s control over her own body and eradicating Christlike democracy, they will have nothing to show for it but calloused feet and bulging karmic debt.
They won their battle, but not their war. Love will forever trump hate.