Daily Readings: Joshua 11-12, Proverbs 11
If you love Trump and have even gotten this far to click on a link you saw, thank you! Before you read on, please take a few minutes to pray that God would allow you to spend the next three minutes reading with an open mind. Not an open mind towards what I have to say, but towards what scripture has to say. This isn’t a long read. If you aren’t going to take the full three minutes, feel free to just stop here. No worries!
We are in a world where not enough Christians spend time going back to the Bible for wisdom. We have a tendency to lean on cable news, talk radio and podcasts, social media, etc. As Christians, we have already been given the ultimate lens that we are called to return to over and over again to seek wisdom.
As a side note, I have voted for more Republicans over the last 18 years I have been able to vote than Democrats. I have some views aligned with each. This is not about that. This is not about tax policy, use of the military, health care, gun control, etc. You can be the most conservative person politically in the country. As a Christian, that does not mean you should blindly follow anyone who claims to be conservative as well. That does not mean that we should extol the virtues of anyone we feel is carrying the flag we align with.
I first wanted to write this post through a softer lens. I wanted to water everything down and not mention anyone by name in the spirit of not being seen as bias. I realized quickly that it would be far better to simply go to the Bible and let it speak for itself.
I am not going to tell you what to think of Donald Trump. I am simply imploring people to view Trump through the lens of what the Bible says and not through the lens of what Fox News, talk radio, or conservative social media says.
Let’s just look at a handful of passages from today’s readings alone. I will simply pose a question I would ask you to seriously consider instead of just brushing off after each verse. Come to your own conclusions.
“When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.” Proverbs 11:2
I simply ask you to ignore all commentary from any other source than the President’s own words. Go scroll through the last 4 months of his Twitter feed and ask yourself if our leader is leading with humility.
“The integrity of the upright guides them, but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity.” Proverbs 11:3
Again, ignore all commentary and simply scroll through the last 18 months of his Twitter and see if this appears to be a man who leads his life with integrity as the cornerstone.
“Whoever derides their neighbor has no sense, but the one who has understanding holds their tongue.” Proverbs 11:12
Again, no commentary. Just Twitter.
“The Lord detests those whose hearts are perverse, but he delights in those whose ways are blameless.” Proverbs 11:20
Simply put, Trump cheated on a former wife with his current wife and then cheated on her with an adult film star while she was pregnant. Trump himself denies none of this. I am not saying we do not all have failings in our lives. We have all fallen short of the glory of God and that is why Christ came in the first place. However, if you are a Christian Trump advocator, I would simply ask you if you have ever heard him give the interview, read the quote in the magazine, etc. where he showed genuine remorse for these actions. Have you seen him express his brokenness and how thankful he is for a God that gives second chances?
No. In fact he brags about these things.
If you are a Trump supporter and a Christian, I have a serious question I beg for you to consider: If Barack Obama had been discovered to have had multiple affairs, a tape came out with him talking in his own voice about how he just starts kissing women without even asking, how you can simply “grab them by their…”, and how he paid hush money to an adult film star to keep their affair quiet during an election; would major evangelical leaders rush to Obama’s defense and say, “We have all fallen short! These attacks on Barack’s character are completely out of bounds?!”
“For lack of guidance a nation falls, but victory is won through many advisers.” Proverbs 11:14
Here is a complete list of all of the advisors who Trump has either fired or who have resigned:
If you are still reading, thank you. Sincerely, thank you.
We live in a society where we tend to ignore any opinions that do not mirror our own or we simply read them with a closed mind and allow ourselves to be sent into a righteous fury over “how wrong this is!” I really appreciate you sticking with me.
It is ok to be conservative. Lots of my views are conservative as well.
That is not what this is about.
I will close with this:
“Hopes placed in mortals die with them; all the promise of their power comes to nothing.” Proverbs 11:6
The only man we should place our hope in is the man who went to the cross to pay the price for our sins.
In our time here on earth, political parties will rise and fall. Leaders will be exalted and then torn down. Our ability to reach others for Christ is so much more important than a single election cycle. Our allegiance to Christ is far more critical than throwing our allegiance behind a certain political figure.
Let’s not ruin our testimony.
Let’s spend less time with cable news and hearing what they have to say and more time with the Word of God seeking after true wisdom.
Thank you for reading today. This one was scary to write.
Thought to ponder
What have I allowed to shape my views recently other than the Bible and Christian community?
I love the thought provoking way you use scriptures to help us align our thoughts back with what the bible is saying. We don’t have to believe everything we hear from others — getting back to critically thinking for ourselves through a biblical lense is so important! Loved this today!
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Thank you, Aaron, for your courage to speak these challenging words!
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I enjoyed the read. I do know that the Christian mind also has limits to what it can take! No one here has ever been degraded like President Trump. It is truly terrible to be put down constantly and truly by lies and stand up to it. I truly understand this! President Trump is a man! That’s part of it. Christ was maligned by (Supposed Christians). Could you really be judged by millions all day- put up against killers and be judged! You would want to hit a wall too! Yes, he’s wrong many times, but he has done for so many even since becoming President. We do not see that. We all fail God- each and every day. You are right- his life has been a mess at times, but He is our leader! Would you rather have had Hillary? Consider that! At least we are not at War yet! I did a reading at a Catholic Church yesterday! It was about the crowd choosing a criminal to be released and Crucifying our Lord! The writer called them liars! Pretty strong for Christians in that era! Wonder what they would have said in this Era?
Carol, thank you for taking the time to read and respond. I think the fundamental problem with our politics today is that we spend too much time thinking “At this is better than…” instead of holding our leaders to a high level of personal conduct and ethics. Only Republicans can effectively hold other Republicans accountable and only Democrats can hold other Democrats accountable. By going into our tribes, we drive a wedge between ourselves and other people we may have had the opportunity to reach for the Kingdom.
The problem I see if too many Christians that will willingly ignore facts and echo talking points from political pundits defending actions, statements, etc. that are simply indefensible. It then reflects poorly on Christians as a whole. It is ok to say, “I like what Trump has done here, here, and here, but what he just said today is not the way a President should behave.” Conservatives that identify as Christians and go out of their way to defend poor behavior is what I have a problem with and I think it impacts our ability to reach others for Christ. What it comes down to is this, I want people to be intellectually honest with their arguments instead of rallying to a side. We need to be consistent with the standard we hold our leaders to regardless of their political affiliation. Jesus got mad a handful of times in the Bible and the majority of them surrounded religious leaders acting in a hypocritical way. I simply want Christian leaders to approach the words and actions of Trump with the same lens that they would apply to Obama or Hillary if they were in office. And again, I have voted Republican more than Democrat throughout my life. This is not about that. It is about us being honest and not ruining our ministry by defending indefensible actions.
USA is not a Christian country, there are no Christian countries, because the kingdom of God is not of this world. The best we can hope for and are commanded to pray for are leaders that steer the country to the benefit of all. In a democracy we are asked to vote for candidates that best serve those interests. As Christians that often means voting for candidates that WILL do evil when in power. Often it is a choice between two evils, and pick the lesser evil.
We cannot expect all leaders to live upright lives. We are expected to pray for them.
If you expect moral guidance, look at the churches. These are the ones responsible to bring light to the world. And don’t its leaders struggle with living moral lives? Don’t it attendants struggle to live moral lives?
1 Co 5:9 I wrote to you in my letter not to associate with sexually immoral people— 10 not at all meaning the sexually immoral of this world, or the greedy and swindlers, or idolaters, since then you would need to go out of the world. 11 But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler—not even to eat with such a one. 12 For what have I to do with judging outsiders? Is it not those inside the church whom you are to judge? 13 God judges those outside. “Purge the evil person from among you.”
Paul, thank you for taking the time to read and comment. I completely agree that there are frequently “lesser of two evil” choices in politics. However, when someone decides that they are going to make being a Christian a main part of their sales pitch to the Evangelical Right to obtain votes, then it is now incumbent upon Christians to speak truth about actions this person engages in and not minimize terrible behavior. President Trump is currently the most visible “Christian” in the eyes of the world and if he behaves in such a way that does not demonstrate that he has had any life change occur by giving his life over to Jesus, defending those actions can frequently ruin our credibility in the eyes of people that do not yet know Jesus. That is my point.
It is not about falling short of the glory of God that is the issue. We will all fall short. The beauty of the gospel is grace freely given when we did not deserve it! The problem is when Christians rush to minimize behavior, justify actions, and scream “Fake News” at anything that doesn’t fit their narrative. That is what is truly troubling. That is when our politics has become more important to us than our faith.
I have voted conservative more often than not in my life. This is not about how someone needs to vote. It is about honesty from Christians about what is right and wrong regardless of who is in power.