If there were any doubts as to the “messiah” status given to Donald Trump by the Fellowship of the Pharisees, they were laid to rest yesterday when Franklin Graham posted a lengthy diatribe on his Facebook page calling out “Judas” Republicans who betrayed Trump by voting for his impeachment.
From the day Trump held his June 2016 closed-door, media-free meeting with so-called evangelicals and prosperity gospel con-artists to officially exchange G-O-D for the G-O-P in support of his presidency, these sycophantic servants have willingly surrendered all for a seat at Trump’s table.
A classic example of Graham’s surrender to his orange lord and master occurred when he called out then-Democrat candidate for president Pete Buttigieg for boasting about being a homosexual Christian; demanding that the mayor repent.
Mayor Buttigieg says he’s a gay Christian. As a Christian I believe the Bible which defines homosexuality as sin, something to be repentant of, not something to be flaunted, praised or politicized. The Bible says marriage is between a man & a woman—not two men, not two women. 2/3
— Franklin Graham (@Franklin_Graham) April 24, 2019
Of course, Graham was correct to identify homosexuality as a sin and encouraging Buttigieg to repent, but his Pharisaical warning was meaningless and hypocritical because Graham has not only failed to call on Trump to repent for his lying and adultery — Trump once boasted about never needing to ask God for forgiveness — but he frequently and openly defended Trump’s affair with a porn star and his serial lying.
Considering Graham’s track record of extreme sycophancy, comparing Republicans to Judas for supporting Trump’s impeachment isn’t all that surprising.
“Shame, shame on the ten Republicans who joined with Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats in impeaching President Trump yesterday,” Graham wrote. “After all that he has done for our country, you would turn your back and betray him so quickly?”
Graham also said there has “never” been a president like Trump, and borrowing a few prosperity gospel talking points, he praised Trump for lowering Americans’ taxes, building a strong economy, and presiding over record-low unemployment.
The the love of money may the root of all evil, but the Fellowship finds it pretty handy when they’re forced to defend their immoral leader.
Graham also praised Trump for so-called prison reform (a far-left priority), defeating ISIS (he actually made them stronger), and securing the country’s southern border (his treatment of immigrants was Hitleresque).
Right on cue, Graham also included acclamations for how Trump “defended religious liberty like no president before him,” and how the president responsible for record taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood was “the most pro-life president we have ever had.”
Following this sacrifice of praise, Graham proceeded to accuse 10 Republicans of playing the role of Judas after they betrayed God’s Man by voting for Trump’s impeachment.
“But the House Democrats impeached him because they hate him and want to do as much damage as they can. And these ten, from his own party, joined in the feeding frenzy. It makes you wonder what the thirty pieces of silver were that Speaker Pelosi promised for this betrayal.”
Of course, Franklin Graham was equating Republicans who betrayed Trump and voted for his impeachment to Judas, the disciple who betrayed Jesus to the Roman authorities for 30 pieces of silver. (Matthew 26)
Graham wrapped up his post with a Fellowship of the Pharisees classic: We elected a president, not a pastor.
“President Trump isn’t a perfect person. I don’t support or agree with some of the things the President said and did the last couple of weeks. January 6 was a low point in his presidency. We knew he had flaws when he ran for office in 2016. But I, and millions of others, voted for him because of the platform and policies he promised. I still support those. The Democrats have been trying to get rid of the President since the day he took office. What they did yesterday only further divides our nation.”
It’s a sad reality that politicians are gonna politician, but the greater tragedy in the Age of Trump has been the damage done to the Gospel of Jesus Christ at the hands of the Fellowship of the Pharisees and so-called Evangelicals who have sacrificed morality, Godly leadership, and Christian character on the altar of Trumpism.
At the end of the day, this is true:
Everything we know about leadership, Republicans threw away.
Everything we know about character, Republican Christians threw in the garbage.
They grievously hurt this nation. They grievously hurt their neighbors.
May God have mercy.
— David French (@DavidAFrench) January 14, 2021
I’ve written in the past about how the spiritual leaders of today are a lot like the 1930s spiritual leaders that gave rise to Nazi Germany. The refusal of the Lutheran Church to call evil by name along with an over-reliance on what Dietrich Bonhoeffer called “cheap grace” — defined as forgiveness without repentance — created the spiritual environment ripe for Adolf Hitler to seize the reins of political power.
The Fellowship often mentions that there are things about Trump’s behavior and policies that bother them, but as Graham continues to show, his behavior doesn’t bother them enough to risk losing their seat at his table.
Even after seeing every warning about Trump’s unethical and immoral behavior come to pass — most recently on January 6 when he incited an insurrection — Graham declared his unconditional support of Trump. “January 6 was a low point in his presidency,” Graham conceded in his Facebook post. “We knew he had flaws when he ran for office in 2016. But I, and millions of others, voted for him because of the platform and policies he promised. I still support those.”
Much like the Church of Laodicea spoken of in the Book of Revelation, Franklin Graham and the rest of today’s cheap grace evangelicals have become lazy while basking in their so-called riches, not realizing that they are pitiful blind beggars who are lukewarm in their faith and will be vomited out of Jesus’ mouth.
Following four years of unfailing adoration of all things Trump, his evil has been clear for all to see, which reminds me of the story of God’s judgement on the nation of Judah. In the story, the Bible is filled with examples of how God gave the nation every opportunity to reject evil and escape judgement. Despite God’s numerous warnings, Judah not only rejected the opportunity to turn from evil, she became even more defiant and wicked by demanding her free will right to choose evil.
If God judged Judah, his beloved nation, for choosing evil for herself and embracing evil in her king, why should anyone think America will be spared for doing the same thing?
Franklin Graham believes that Republicans who voted for impeachment have betrayed Trump, just as Judas betrayed Christ. But it’s Graham playing the role of Judas because his defense of Trump’s evil leadership is the ultimate betrayal of Christ.
David Leach is the owner of the Strident Conservative. He holds people of every political stripe accountable for their failure to uphold conservative values, and he promotes those values instead of political parties.