Identifying Authentic Christianity

In a Presidential election year where every remaining candidate except Bernie Sanders claims to be a Christian, Donald Trump has apparently won the grand prize; the support of those who call themselves evangelical Christians. Why he has their support, however, has little to do with his declared Christianity; it has everything to do with his outrageous display of character traits that are anything but Christian in nature.

Anyone can call themselves a Christian, and in America – unlike the Middle East or China – there is virtually no cost or liability associated with such a claim. While the Bible compels us to be cautious about judging the validity of an individual’s conversion, it also clearly identifies authentic Christianity.

  1. Authentic Christianity does not exist without faith in Jesus Christ: While Trump calls himself a Christian; he denies any need of a Savior, boldly stating that he doesn’t think he has ever sought forgiveness from God.[1] In a follow-up interview last year he asked: “Why do I have to repent or ask for forgiveness, if I am not making mistakes.”[2]
  1. Authentic Christianity recognizes personal limitations: Trump’s arrogance is legendary. He repeatedly boasts of his personal ability to “win,” and “win big” while ignoring the fact that he is indeed a major loser.  His losses include: two failed marriages, four bankruptcies (which he says were not personal losses because they were businesses), Trump Shuttle (failed 1992), Trump Magazine (failed 2009), Trump Plaza in Atlantic City, NJ (failed 2013), Trump Mortgage (failed 2008), Trump Vodka… well, you get the picture.[3] Yet Trump insists that he is a “victory machine.” It is quite extraordinary that a man who claims that he can’t be bullied or bought presumes to attain his goals by means of his authority and wealth. The superior negotiating skills he plans to use once he becomes president have been missing from his campaign, and if Trump is to produce the results he promises, he will need far more help than he can buy. Genuine believers know that their help comes “from the Lord, which made heaven and earth” (Psalm 121:2).
  1. Authentic Christianity demands respect for the Bible: Trump carries a Bible (as a prop) and insists that it’s an “important book,” stating in 2011: “I think the Bible is certainly, it is the book”[4] Yet he knows virtually nothing about its contents, nor does he embrace the life-altering principles found therein.
  1. Authentic Christianity exalts righteousness: Trump displays, without apology, a proud, profane, presumptuous, patronizing disrespect for righteousness. He boasts of his immorality, defends the choice of his wife – whom he met at an adult establishment called The Kit Kat club in Manhattan – to pose… unclothed, currently leases space to a “Gentleman’s Club” in a casino he owns in Atlantic City, NJ, and gives profanity laced speeches to potential voters on the campaign trail. (I will not provide documentation for these statements because of the content of many of the links. However, the information is easily verified via a simple search on google). Instead of exalting biblical righteousness, trump promotes his own brand of unrighteousness.
  1. Authentic Christianity embraces wisdom, understanding that “Wisdom is the principal thing” (Proverbs 4:7): What about the evangelical Christians who aggressively support Trump? Are they blind to Trump’s character issues? Are they convinced that his character doesn’t matter? Do they really have so little wisdom? There is one other option: What if they really do identify with Trump? That possibility is alarming:
  • It means that those Christians have made a conscious choice to abandon foundational biblical values for the sake of getting what they want, any way they can, the epitome of pragmatism.
  • It means that they have chosen to abandon the constitutional form of government that gave them the freedom they currently enjoy for the sake of installing a tyrant who will enforce his will, with or without the support of a duly elected congress (A republican – or wolf in sheep’s clothing democrat – version of the last 7 years).
  • It means that they are convinced that their newly chosen “leader” shares their values and will do what he says. They are living “vicariously” though him. He is the political embodiment of a victim who finally says “I’m mad as **** and I’m not gonna take it anymore!”
  • It means that they will be shocked when what they receive bears no likeness to what they expected. Trump is a master deceiver. A Christian is known by his testimony: first by what he says (little credibility, anybody can claim to be a Christian), followed by what he does (evidence of regeneration) and reinforced by how he lives (the personification of Christlikeness). They willfully ignore the historical record of his choices and actions which openly contradict his stated positions.

The scriptural objective for every believer is found in Philippians 2:5-8 which says:

“Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”

Donald Trump’s life provides testimony of many things: business expertise, philanthropic efforts and pragmatic choices, all garnished with brazen arrogance, and accomplished by the ruthless pursuit of exclusively personal goals.

What you won’t find is evidence of authentic Christianity: it doesn’t exist!

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[1] http://www.cnn.com/2015/07/18/politics/trump-has-never-sought-forgiveness/

[2] http://www.christianpost.com/news/trump-why-do-i-have-to-repent-or-ask-for-forgiveness-if-i-am-not-making-mistakes-video-141856/

[3] http://time.com/money/3923629/donald-trump-name-business-failures/

[4] https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2016/01/19/trump-says-very-curious-things-about- god-church-and-the-bible/

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4 Responses

  1. James E Groshong Sr says:

    Thanks for sharing, I think this also applies to President Barack Hussein Obama who claims to be Christian . -Dr. James E. Groshong Sr.

    • twhyman says:

      Thanks for your comment Dr. Groshong. I wholeheartedly agree that our current President’s claim of Christian faith bears no evidence. But I think Obama’s deception is far more sinister. While I believe Trump is calculating and pragmatic in his choices, I also believe he cares about preserving America’s strength and defending our freedom. Obama only seems to care about changing the fundamental values of our country, trashing our freedom with every stroke of his pen.

  2. Vickie N says:

    I remember Obama every saying he was. He has basically done everything he can to go against our beliefs. He wants to tear down Christians. But between Clinton’s platform and Trump’s I would vote for someone wants to preserve America and more on the moral side than someone who is not. We need a spiritual revival. Christians to wake up while there is still time.

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