Can Christians Vote for Trump? Faith, Folderol, and Facts
Written by Selwyn Duke
It’s a twist on cancel culture: Christians “canceling” their support for President Trump because of aspects of his past or present behavior. “How can they vote for such an ‘unpleasant … despicable person?’” is the thinking, as one commentator relates it.
That writer, Mark Landsbaum, answers the above question as he makes the “Christian case for Trump.” Pointing out that the “world spends a lot of effort persuading people that evil is really something good: the killing of babies in the womb, engaging in sexual perversion, confiscating of what belongs to someone to give to someone it doesn’t belong to,” he states that malevolent forces also work another con:
They exploit good people’s reluctance to embrace evil.
As to this, Landsbaum cites Bible-study friends of his who say, referencing Trump, that “a Christian shouldn’t vote for such an unpleasant, some say, despicable person.”
Interestingly, this is precisely the argument sometimes heard from the mainstream media/Left; they will talk about Trump’s sins, real and imagined, and then attempt to shame Christians with the message, “You’d vote for a man like that, and you call yourself a Christian?!” (Of course, they only care about your soul — really!)
Writing at American Thinker, Landsbaum admits that while four years ago he had similar reservations, he can now say that “Trump has done more for the cause of life, for religious liberty, for improved economic conditions of people of all races, for law and order, for ratcheting down overbearing government, for easing tax and regulation burdens and a host of other good things than any president in my lifetime.”
As for those who can’t stomach supporting “the lesser evil,” Landsbaum states that this is “the wrong way to frame the choices.” Every candidate (like every voter and every Bible study attendee) “falls short of the glory of God,” he reminds us, writing that the choice actually “is, and always is, which candidate will do more good.”
Apropos to this, famed German leader Otto Von Bismarck pointed out that “politics is the art of the possible.” It’s not the art of “You get exactly what you want, right now, no questions asked” — but of the possible.
My ideal candidate would be a guy named Selwyn Duke (and he’s far from perfect). Next on my list would probably be Pat Buchanan or Alan Keyes, but none of us will be president. Rather, “possible” November 3 are Donald Trump and Joe Biden — period.
And what’s certainly impossible is perfection because neither Jesus nor an angel will ever appear on the ballot. In fact, Landsbaum points out that this isn’t just a reality with the politicians we choose but with the people God chooses. He then provides examples from the Bible, compiled by Christian writer Gary DeMar, to illustrate this point:
• Gideon (an idolater)
• Barak (a coward)
• Samson (a womanizer far worse than JFK and Bill Clinton)
• Jephthah (son of a prostitute, who “lived with a gang of scoundrels,” and made a reckless vow that cost his daughter her life)
• Samuel (a terrible father who raised evil sons)
• David (an adulterer and murderer)
Some may now say it’s hypocritical for Christians to vote for Trump after having criticized liberals for supporting Bill Clinton in the 1990s, but there should be and often is a profound difference. The Left sought to validate Clinton by shrugging off — if not rubber stamping — his actions and defining deviancy downwards. The line “Character doesn’t matter” and the excuse “It’s a private matter” became rallying cries, and one liberal actually said to me when alluding to Clinton’s adultery, “He did the right thing.”
This reflects not only the general leftist desire to erode traditional morality, but also a very human fault: Having trouble loving the sinner while condemning the sin, people too often will begin to accept, or at least be less troubled by, transgressions someone they admire has committed.
In contrast, a mature person can passionately support someone in general or for a position while just as passionately opposing his sins. For our obligation is to advance the good, inclusive of the good that person reflects and the good he does not.
Speaking of sins, the more-overlooked variety are those of omission, things we should do but don’t. An example can be taking our ball and going home — and failing to take right action to preserve civilization — because neither team captain can pass our purity test.
As to this, “Donald Trump is a fallen sinner like Gideon, David, Samuel and the rest of us,” concludes Landsbaum. “But his track record is proof that he is clearly the better choice.”
Christians are called to be “in this world, but not of it.” “Not of it” means striving for holiness, but “in this world” means, in part, that we participate in ways that bring it closer to virtue. If striving for the former makes us sacrifice the latter, we really have missed the point.
Selwyn Duke (@SelwynDuke) has written for The New American for more than a decade. He has also written for The Hill, Observer, The American Conservative, WorldNetDaily, American Thinker, and many other print and online publications. In addition, he has contributed to college textbooks published by Gale-Cengage Learning, has appeared on television, and is a frequent guest on radio.
Courtesy of The New American