Russell Moore, the head of the Southern Baptist’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, is watching donations to his organization go over a cliff because of his vocal opposition to Donald Trump.
A prominent evangelical leader who harshly criticized Donald Trump during the presidential campaign now faces a backlash from fellow evangelicals who backed Trump.
Russell Moore, who presides over the political arm of the Southern Baptist Convention, called Trump “an awful candidate” and criticized “the old-guard religious right political establishment” for supporting him, notwithstanding Trump’s “serious moral problems” and a Southern Baptist tradition of opposing politicians whose personal behavior is considered un-Christian.
Seriously: How can you not love this? The only Southern Baptist leader who had the nerve and moral compass to say frankly that voting for Donald Trump is to disgrace oneself is being publicly eaten by other Southern Baptists — the overwhelming majority of whom did vote for The Donald.
As I said a long while ago, to be an evangelical Christian is a social identity, not a theological stance.
Mohler and Moore are struggling to enforce a meaningless distinction, hewing to evangelicalism as a theological stance while sniffing piously at the doomed and dying culture in which it is embedded and from which it draws its strength — chiefly (though of course not exclusively) the racist, anti-intellectual, anti-modernity, misogynistic, south. I am not kidding y’all: That sweet old lady who hasn’t missed a Sunday since that glorious day she was saved 60-years ago once delivered picnic-baskets of sandwiches to the menfolk who stood at roadside and threw rocks at the civil rights marchers — and she doesn’t know bupkus about what’s in the Bible, or what ‘evangelical’ means theologically. What she knows is that the world is changing, that the culture of her community, even her church, is changing, and in a way that she doesn’t like — and that it’s all the fault of those uppity dark people who don’t even speak good American half the time, and those sluts who went to college, and those snooty smarty-pants perfessers, and those newspaper people, and those gay people who want to get married and adopt kids and be a family.
And Donald Trump, bless his heart, hates them all just as much as she …
Russell Moore, I’m afraid, is learning why no decent adult has anything to do with his ridiculous club: Evangelicalism is simply malice with a smile.