(ThyBlackMan.com) Conservative Evangelicalism is the philosophical belief system permeating different churches within Christianity—especially in the South, that seeks to retain their stringent biblical traditional beliefs of Christianity. It seeks to influence politics and public policy with its exclusive interpretation of the teachings of Christianity. It is a political movement of Christians who support conservative political ideologies and policies within the secular or non-sectarian realm of politics. The movement is made up of predominantly White Christians formed around a core of conservative Evangelical Protestants and Roman Catholics beliefs. Church members are influenced by weekly sermons that focus on social issues and grievances to motivate the congregants to vote on those issues.
Conservatism is a cultural, social, and political philosophy that seeks to promote and preserve traditional institutions, practices, and values. The term, “Evangelical” originated in the Bible. It is translated from the Greek euaggellion and the Anglo-Saxon godspel, meaning good news of salvation from sin through faith in the atoning death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The term “Christian” was originally a derogatory term to insult those who followed the teaching of Jesus Christ. It was similar to the “N” word of today. “The disciples were called Christians first in Antioch” (Acts 11:26).
We Have Found The Messiah!
June 16, 2015, was the first time Donald Trump came down the golden escalator in the Trump Tower to announce he was running for President. During that time, many Conservative Evangelical Christians being encouraged by their pastors to support Donald Trump may have at first asked themselves, “Can there any good thing come out of New York City?” Just as the disciple Nathanael when he first heard about Jesus asked, “Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth?” After a few months on the campaign trail running for the Republican nomination, the Conservative Evangelical Christian Community embraced Trump as if it was the disciple Andrew telling Peter he had found the Messiah (John 1:41-46).
By January 2016, Trump’s White Conservative Evangelical Christian support was so strong that he made a prophecy at a campaign rally in Sioux Center Iowa. He boasted that support for him would not decline even if he shot someone in the middle of a crowded street.
“I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose voters.”
For the past seven years, as the nation lived through the Trump presidency and the nearly three years since Trump left office, the prophecy he forecasted back in 2016 is truer today than ever before. With each new revelation of Trump’s legal and moral ineptitude, his base of support seems to only grow stronger—especially among White Conservative Evangelical Christians. It is as if Trump is their New Messiah.
According to conservative Republican and former Illinois Congressman, Joe Walsh, the Republican Party is no longer a political party, “It is a cult. It is the party of Trumpism … Donald Trump can do no wrong and say no wrong. He is a martyr to Republican voters,” said Walsh. In other words, Trump’s followers see his legal and personal troubles not as the result of his own choices, but as his being persecuted by the evil left. They see Trump as being crucified for them. Trump constantly tells his followers, “Always remember: they are coming after me, because I am fighting for you!” After making this statement at one of his rallies, a Trump faithful, @ibadchaarawtaza6125 posted: “Psalms 55:21 – The words of his mouth were smoother than butter, but war was in his heart: his words were softer than oil, yet were they drawn swords.”
Trump has a solid devoted flock that will vote for him no matter what. More than 80 percent of white evangelicals voted for the MAGA party. Even with his un-Christlike character, being impeached twice, and all his current legal troubles, These ardent supporters hold a favorable view of Trump. They also believe everything that comes out of his mouth. His political rallies are like sermons on the mount. A recent New York Times/Siena College poll shows that Trump has transformed the GOP into his own image. According to the poll, 71% of GOP primary voters think Republicans should stand behind Trump regardless of his personal or legal problems.
White Conservative Evangelical Christians are Trump’s most loyal supporters. They are his disciples. They are not hesitant in telling reporters and pollsters that almost nothing could make them change their minds about voting for Trump in the upcoming presidential race of 2024. White Conservative Evangelical Christians who pride themselves as the virtue of family values and law and order, see no wrong when it comes to Trump. These Bible-carrying, scripture-quoting, faithfully tithe-paying individuals, wearing the “Make America Great Again” hats, have long accepted that the former president is not a model of virtue or integrity.
Not a Perfect Vessel
Aside from the Access Hollywood tape that surfaced just before the 2016 presidential election where Trump bragged about being able to grab women by their private parts, at least 18 women have accused Donald Trump of varying inappropriate behaviors, including allegations of sexual harassment or sexual assault. This all occurred before he was found guilty by a Manhattan federal jury of sexually abusing E. Jean Carroll and ordered to pay 5 million dollars.
Trump has been married three times. His current wife Melania, prior to marrying Trump did nude modeling and some soft-porn shoots. White Conservative Evangelical Christians had nothing to say about this. But they made a big fuss when Michelle Obama once wore a sleeveless dress.
Adam Gabbatt, writer for the Guardian points out, that Evangelical leaders justified their support for Trump by comparing him to King Cyrus, as told in Ezra 1:1–4, who liberated the Jews from Babylonian captivity. Even though King Cyrus was a Persian ruler who did not believe in the God of Israel—God, according to Evangelical leaders, used him to do God’s will (Ezra 1: 1-4). White Conservative Evangelical Christians believe that God is doing the same with Trump. Even though some of them may see Trump as a reprobate of a man—they believe that God is using him to do God’s will (Romans 1:28).
For White Conservative Evangelical Christians, Trump came to them like manna from heaven. Although not a perfect vessel when it comes to morals and character—he still could be used by God to lead a modern-day crusade against what they believe is a deteriorating godless America thanks to the decades of minority achievements brought on by the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s (Abortion, Affirmative Action, Gay Marriage, Gay Rights, Integration, Interracial Marriage, Women Rights, Voting Rights, etc.). Trump appointing three justices to the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade was, to White Conservative Evangelical Christians, like the miracle of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead—“no more dead babies.”
Robert Jones, president and founder of Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI) and author of White Too Long: The Legacy of White Supremacy in American Christianity, using the research of PRRI, concluded that White Conservative Evangelical Christians do not support Trump because of his anti-abortion position, but because of his racist views. “It was never really about abortion. I think that that line is, frankly, a propaganda line for evangelical leaders to try to justify their support for Trump,” said Jones. The slogan ‘Make America Great Again,’ was very appealing to White Conservative Evangelical Christians. The most powerful word in that mantra was the last one. What it did is it evoked this powerful sense of nostalgia for an America that many white conservative Christians saw slipping away.”
During Trump’s 2016 campaign, “He was railing against Muslims and immigrants much more than he was railing against abortion. At every rally, he was talking about ‘build the wall’ to keep Mexican immigrants out of the US. He was going to ban travel from Muslim-majority countries. I think it was those kinds of appeals that communicated this worldview that the country was rightfully owned by white Christians, and he was going to protect that view of the country,” said Jones. Also, as president, Trump refused to denounce white supremacists who had rallied in Charlottesville.
Inasmuch As Ye Did It Not To One Of The Least Of These
Kristin Kobes Du Mez, author of Jesus and John Wayne, How White Evangelicals Corrupted a Faith and Fractured a Nation, points out that the election of Barack Obama, America’s first black president, and the changes that happened under his administration, such as the legalization of same-sex marriage created a “perfect storm.” White Evangelical Christians felt they were losing ‘their’ country.
According to Du Mez, “This is where they’ve really started talking about religious liberty, and how they are embattled and they need a champion. So, it actually works in Trump’s favor that he is not the kind of Sunday school poster boy. He’s not a man who exemplifies traditional Christian moral values. The fact that he doesn’t: his ruthlessness, his crassness, the fact that he will ‘do what needs to be done’. That makes him perfect for the moment,” said Du Mez.
White Conservative Evangelicals are the voting base of the Republican Party. They cloak their racist views in the banner of Christianity. They use biblical scripture to justify their racial bigotry. They use scripture such as Ezra chapters 9 and 10 and Nehemiah chapter 13 to justify segregation and their opposition to interracial marriage. They use the biblical story of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah (Genesis 19:1–28: see also Leviticus 18:22 & 20:13) and the Apostle Paul’s words in Romans 1:26,27 as examples to justify their stance against the gay community. They argue that abortion is an abomination (Psalm 106:37-38, 2 Kings 16:2-3, 2 Kings 17:16-17) perpetrated upon unborn sons and their daughters forcing them to pass through the fire of the abortion procedure.
White Conservative Evangelical Christians believe the bible when it says that God made the world and all things therein, “And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: For in him we live, and move, and have our being” (Acts 17:24-28). However, many of these same White Conservative Evangelical Christians oppose any laws that give non-whites, who God made from the same blood as them, the same rights as they. They see equality for minorities as taking something away from them.
When it comes to people they hate, the words that Jesus spoke in Luke 6:31 seem to have no meaning to them: “And as ye would that men should do to you, do ye also to them likewise.” In other words, when it comes to gays, immigrants, minorities, and any woman who want the right to make decisions about her own body, White Conservative Evangelical Christians, seem to have no problem ignoring the words of Jesus that tell them to, “treat others the way you want to be treated.”
White Conservative Evangelical Christians say they are followers of Jesus. But when it comes to their racist views on non-white immigrants, Jesus may have described them best when he said, “For I was an hungered, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not. Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungered, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.” (Matthew 25:42-45).
The Sociopathic Criminal
In spite of all the social ills in the country that White Conservative Evangelical Christians rail against, they give Donald Trump a pass on all of his many publicly known indiscretions—including his current legal troubles. The more trouble he gets into, the more they support him—including opening their wallets to send him a donation—faithfully tithing to the Church of Donald Trump. Trump is now facing four major legal indictments.
- The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida accused Trump of taking highly sensitive national security classified documents when he left the White House in January 2021.
- In the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Federal prosecutors charged Trump with his attempt to subvert the results of the 2020 election, including his role in the Capitol insurrection on Jan. 6, 2021.
- In New York state Trump has been indicted in a payoff scheme to Stormy Daniels, a porn star who claimed she had a sexual encounter with him. The hush money was to buy Daniels’ silence. The payoff was to avoid a possible sex scandal in the final weeks of the 2016 presidential campaign. Trump had this adulterous relationship(Exodus 20:14; Deuteronomy 5:18; Luke 18:20) with Daniels just four months after his wife Melania gave birth to his youngest son, Barron.
- The Georgia Election Interference Investigation, Georgia state court. In December 2020 and January 2021, Trump sought to overturn the result of the presidential election in the state of Georgia.
Why is it that Donald Trump coming onto the political scene has caused such an extreme white backlash in America? Cheryl Eiffel seems to have the answer. Eiffel served as President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. She is now serving as the Endowed Chair of the Vernon Jordan Civil Rights at Howard University. In the podcast Rachel Maddow Presents Deja News, Eiffel describes Trump as the accelerant to a culture fire that has been smoldering in America since the social, political, and economic gains of minorities resulting from the Civil Rights movement of the 1960s.
“I do believe that the power of the 1960s was compelling America to confront racism and the contradictions of racism with its image of itself to create a culture in which espousing racist beliefs was no longer socially acceptable. I think those things were very important. They were helpful certainly for our lives (black people) to be able to move through the world. I think that was a huge success. I think that what we are seeing now is the response to how successfully we had penetrated every aspect of American life with at least the tacit understanding that the expectation was that you would be on the side of equality and justice or at least pretend. And this is where Trump becomes an accelerant because what Trump did was, he tapped into something that I think many of us didn’t realize many white people were experiencing which was they just wanted to be free of all of this. They wanted to be free of the requirements of decency. Free of the requirements of embracing a belief in equality. Free of having to speak in a way that shows respect for others. That all of this it turns out felt unbearable for a segment of the white population. And Trump came and said, ‘Then don’t do it. You don’t have to do it! You’re great! In fact, you’re better!’”
In other words, Donald Trump made it okay for white people (including faithful church-attending white people) to publicly let out the racism that had been bottled up inside of them for years.
According to historian George Marsden, “Trump was able to add open hatred and resentments to the political-religious stance of ‘true believers’…Tribal instincts seem to have become overwhelming. The dominance of political religion over professed religion is seen in how, for many, the loyalty to Trump became a blind allegiance. The result is that many Christian followers of Trump have come to see a gospel of hatreds, resentments, vilifications, put-downs, and insults as expressions of their Christianity.”
On June 26, 2023, Conservative Lawyer, George Conway was interviewed by CNN host, Anderson Cooper. The topic of the conversation was concerning a 2021 audio tape of Trump obtained by CNN. On the tape, Trump was talking to a writer and two of his staff members about a classified document. Based on the conversation recorded on the audio tape, Trump seemed to be showing a classified document of a Pentagon military battle plan to defend against Iran. When lawyer George Conway was asked by CNN host Anderson Cooper, how damaging he thought the tape would be to Donald Trump, Conway concluded his response to the question by stating, “This man has no respect for rules, no respect for the lives of other human beings, no respect for the country, no respect for the Constitution, no respect for his duties, he is a sociopathic criminal, and this is just another nail in the coffin of another thing that is just going to put him away.”
Yet even with the revelation of Trump’s sociopathic, criminal, mental, and psychological unfitness to be President of the United States, as clearly outlined in the book, The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 27 Psychiatrists and Mental Health Experts Assess a President, his support among his base has not faltered. And his strongest support is coming from White Conservative Evangelical Christians—who say they are devout worshippers of Jesus Christ.
In conclusion, perhaps White Conservative Evangelical Christians should spend less time worshipping Christ and spend more time being Christ-like. Then maybe they will be able to clearly see as stated by conservative judge J. Michael Luttig, who was appointed by George H.W. Bush, that Donald Trump is not their New Messiah, but “a clear and present danger to American democracy.”
Staff Writer; Robert J. Walker
This brother is a retired Mississippi Educator. He is the author of several books including; and Kindle. He lives in Walls, Mississippi.
One may contact him at; [email protected].