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Did Trump destroy evangelical Christianity? – Greg Sheridan

Every now and then an article comes along which is so good that it has to be shared in full – without comment.  Last weekend I read this article by Greg Sheridan in The Australian.  I mentioned the article in The Open Mind of the Sydney Morning Herald   

It’s so worth reading – it takes a balanced and informed look at the good, the bad and the ugly in US evangelicalism….and my colleague Steve McAlpine even gets a mention….

Here it is in full….Enjoy.

Did Trump destroy evangelical Christianity?

In a tragic and bitter irony, American Christians are deeply divided in the wake of Donald Trump’s presidency.


Donald Trump bows his head during a prayer while surrounded by his then-Vice President Mike Pence, faith leaders and evangelical ministers after signing a proclamation declaring a day of prayer in the Oval Office in 2017. Picture: Getty
Donald Trump bows his head during a prayer while surrounded by his then-Vice President Mike Pence, faith leaders and evangelical ministers after signing a proclamation declaring a day of prayer in the Oval Office in 2017. Picture: Getty


  1. The Lord Jesus’ approach was one heart at a time, one life at a time. Though he was quite clear on the evil of the system, both Roman and Jewish establishment, he did not confront it head on in any triumphalist way. He knew that God’s reign over the hearts and minds of men depended on life-transforming conviction wrought in the heart by His Spirit alone. Even He “failed” to rally all to His side due to the brokenness of this world -many who sang “Hosanna, Hosanna” ended up shouting “Crucify, Crucify”

    Greg’s great writing understandably incorporates generalisations and some assumptions, but the point he makes is not to be gainsaid. If we get the point, which is what matters, the smaller details can be straightened out, recognising that our own “sitz-in-leben” experience conditions our perspective when interpreting what we encounter.

    A well-known and much trusted expositor of the Word conveyed his understanding of a Biblical truth from His perspective as an American and since he had very little experience in the actual mission field, the people in Africa realised his inability to grasp the fuller meaning of the doctrine. We see “in a glass dimly” but soon we will see with full understanding.

  2. An excellent article by an informed writer, though I was hoping the “Trump era” would have by now slid into a time that was just a bad memory

  3. From what I can tell, Trump is an amoral narcissist who is about as far away from Christianity as anyone can be. And yet, the US was probably better off having him in the White House than having the wokeistanis in power.

    1. Trump’s non – belief did not affect much at all .

      The bigger problem for the West is not the , usually quiet ,atheism or agnosticism of ordinary people but rather the Churches’ sentimental nonsense of ” the social gospel ” and “liberation theology “.

  4. The template described in the final quote is simply the unclutched straw of Jewish emulation.

    The social cohesion of Christians simply cannot match this ethnic solidarity. It should be a matter of regret for all men of the West that this sorry situation obtains.

  5. A very poor article – why?
    events dear boy events (as a UK chancellor DH once said)
    a) Russell Moore – leaving SBC – may be worth a case study in itself. He was a fully paid up member of the never trumpers, and on the “progressive wing” of the SBC.
    b) Tim Keller – just watch the PCA tear itself apart over “Revoice” and in the vanguard of the controversy are all Redeemer cohorts. Rev Keller is a gifted conservative progressive.
    c) Media – just check how the MSM lied again and again during the Trump years, even this week there is the report into the Lafayette Park. It is now clear many no longer listen to the progressive narrative of the MSM,
    d) Vaccine nervousness – just watch the deaths and also watch the descent into totalitarian-esque government. This is a good catch by the writer to see that this is a symbol of revolt.

    The writer is following yesterday’s path. (something along the old political line “the problem with the European union is that there is not enough of the European union” ) He sees the problem with diminishing cultural influence is that it was done badly in the past and not done deeply enough.

    I agree that cultural involvement was done badly, but today’s path should be not the progressive voices (which informs the writer’s unintended bias) nor fundamentalist voices , but be Confessional Reformed voices.

    1. I dont think any SBC leader can be described as a progressive and neither can you describe someone as a conservative progressive – thats a contradiction too.

      Might I suggest that Keller and Moore are neither progressive conservatives nor centrists, but are classical conservatives, whereas the post Trump Republicans, including the bulk of the religious establishment, are more right leaning popularists.

  6. Surely , “Events Dear Boy” was SuperMac ?

    DH’s famous quote was ” I’ll squeeze the rich till the pips squeak.”

  7. Signs of the Times, all of it. President Trump played his part in the scenario and only proved that Evangelicals are far from the fundamentals of the faith, being easily persuaded to cross the line of the written boundary of God’s Word. You would think that after 245 years since the Declaration of Independence for this Republic, the one nation under God; that more attention might have been placed upon God’s Sovereignty than Worldy fame. Ian Paisley was correct in his assumptions of the great Evangelist of America and America has suffered the dilution of God’s graces since the overwhelming presence and acceptance by Christians of Roman Catholicism. President Trump used his office as a point of division among American Christians, but as an American, in a broken system; I had no choice but to cast a vote for him considering the DNC’s candidate and the scandals that followed her. This was just part of the plan to soften Americas Fundamental Christian Faith even more and it succeeded because a vast majority of Evangelicals have gone left in politics and religion. Now the plan can continue to a One World system of government and religion. The Bible, regardless of how you interpret it has an awesome ending: God will be God, the Sovereign God of all Creation and those of us who endure in the faith of Jesus till the end will be there to see Him and live under His reign. For now, may God help us see through the smoke screen presently in America and throughout the globe.

  8. The main depravity of Western Culture has been and continues to come from the political left. “Look at Trump!” was consistently used a battle cry by the offended elitists who otherwise loved fraternizing with him before he became their chief critic and rival. The hypocrisy is so thick you can shovel it— the convenient use of the “Capital Riot” all while ignoring the 100+ days of woke rioting in Portland; the fears of a paramilitary takeover when there were no weapons violations prosecuted from January 6th; the feigned outrage at Trump’s sexual commentary— from Hollywood and the political homes of those who fraternized with Weinstein; the incessant hand-ringing about Trumpian Twitter hyperbole and lies— all from woke liars who fundamentally believe that men can be women, and that racism doesn’t exist outside of those with the thinnest melanin layers.
    Nobody deserved Trump more than the American political left. And the reason why Evangelicals voted for him is NOT because they didn’t perceive his blatant flaws; it’s because they (rightly) saw the dangers of the sanctimonious, elitist, fatuous, collectivist, anti-Christian, pro-death, Marxist-inspired, entrenched political Left even more.

  9. As an American Evangelical I thought it spot on for the most part though I agree with some concerns ryan voiced above.
    I think this article might do a better job of defining why people voted for Trump:

    Also, off topic, but I am not sure how to email you Mr. Robertson but, what is your take on the decline of the Church of Scotland? I have heard but, I am not so sure so do forgive my ignorance, that the Torrance family hatred of ‘federal theology’ helped pave the way.

  10. My view is not that Trump changed evangelical values, but that these already *were* the values of Trump. It has been a slow burn, seen well in the difference in values between Billy and Franklin Graham

    Like it or not American churches are collapsing under the weight of wanting the authority of Christ without the teaching of Christ and this is why so many are headed to violent conspiracy theory groups. Truth has become less important than authority and “love your neighbor as yourself” has become “Marxism”

  11. “Idealising him, seeing him as a cultural saviour, learning to hate all his enemies, letting something of his abusive, spiteful spirit seep into your being, that was a terrible mistake.” Amen!!

  12. i would take greg sheridan right wing views with a grain of salt as he does not represent the christian faith

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