Monday, March 7, 2016

Christians on the Mountaintop - Do We Bow Down?

Robert Jeffress endorses Trump
Whether you believe we are approaching the end of the world or not, things certainly are becoming interesting in a "striking parallels" sort of way. This past week, First Baptist Church of Dallas Pastor, Robert Jeffress, told his congregation that "Christians who do not vote for Donald Trump are fools." Jeffress has become a very loud proponent of Donald Trump as savior of the country of late and he doubled down on that in last week's sermon.

Let's skim right over Jesus's admonition that anyone who calls another person a "fool" will be in danger of "hell fire" (Matt. 5:22) and get right to it. Most Christians are familiar with the story in Matthew 4, ironically found just one chapter in front of the 'no calling people fools" admonition, is the story of the devil's temptation of Christ.

Remember there were three temptations. The first was the temptation for Christ to show off his power by turning stones to bread (remember he was hungry at the time). The second was the temptation to show off his power by engaging in risky behavior (throwing himself off the temple roof) and forcing the angels to catch him. The third was on the mountaintop where Satan offered to give Jesus the world and skip all the uncomfortable flogging and crucifixion business in exchange for him bowing down and acknowledging the prince of this world.

Jesus would have none of it. The takeaway from this story is that you don't give obeisance to the devil in exchange for a promise of power. You probably know where this is going. Donald Trump has made passing remarks about protecting and empowering Christianity, not that he, himself, needs any of the traditional benefits of Christianity like forgiveness of sin or guidance in how he should behave. He promises to make this a "Christian" nation again and to make America great. He promises to drive out the filthy Muslim hordes and give us free government healthcare, to make us rich and to make us powerful.  Sound familiar?

We, as Christians are standing with the devil on the mountaintop. The devil isn't wearing a red suit. He doesn't have a tail and horns and a pitchfork. He's wearing a $3000 suit and a bad red combover. Instead of a pitchfork, he has a fat bank account full of money that he's conned and swindled out of the very sorts of people who shout his name and who apparently will beat up anyone who dares to disagree with their lord and master. We were even treated last week to an eerie group pledge with right hands raised at a Trump rally. 

As Nancy Reagan would have put it, "Just say NO!"  The Donald is promising Christians power, glory and riches in exchange for worship. And he's getting the worship, make no mistake. Throughout history, the devil has used the same tactics over and over to win power for himself and his supporters. He starts with promises to fill their bellies, then to show off their power by doing dangerous things. Finally he asks them to bow down in exchange for all the wealth in the world.  It's always the same.

While Christ offers to change our hearts, Satan only offers to change our circumstances. Hitler did it in 1933. Stalin and Lenin did the same thing in 1917. Mao repeated the process in 1949. The Roman emperors took power by offering "bread and circuses", then the excitement of conquest, then power over the world. It's always the same playbook. Trump offers us "deals" that will make us wealthy and well-fed, a chance to show off our power over our enemies and only asks us to pledge our loyalty to him in exchange for the chance to share Trump's glory.

I find it stunning that Christians, who worry about the rise of the Beast at the end of time, so eagerly flock together to create an Image to the Beast in someone like Trump. Donald Trump may not be the actual anti-Christ any more than they feared Barak Obama was, but like Obama, I think the Donald is working for the anti-Christ. Even he may not know it yet, but the events that Donald Trump threatens to put into motion - war on the families of terrorists, a veritable "Trail of Tears" for Mexican illegals, and the further expansion of government to take care of our "needs" all serve the interest of the Beast or the anti-Christ or the devil or whoever is behind the actual conspiracy against humankind that is taking place right in front of our eyes.

And as the Jews in Jesus' day had the Sanhedrin pitching for Satan's team, we apparently have church leaders doing the same.
Prominent clergy like Jeffress, Jerry Falwell Jr., Michael Murdoch, and black evangelical leader Mark Burns are pitching for Trump.  Even Evangelical TV host, Pat Robertson, says, "(Trump) inspires us all." 

Well, this is one Christian who is not "inspired" by Donald Trump. I'm horrified. God help us if we let this serial philanderer, adulterer, swindler, mob-connected racketeer, casino and strip club owner, serial bankruptcy artist and egomaniacal demagogue anywhere near the White House. Some simple trusting Christians like Trump because they say that because he is rich, he will not be corrupted by the corporate oligarchs who buy influence in Washington and secretly control everything in our country. "He doesn't need their money," is the reasoning.

I've got news for you people - Donald Trump IS the corporate oligarchy. He's been buying influence in Washington and everywhere else for his entire career. How do you think he got so rich in the first place?  He's not corruptible?  You could make that argument. Trump is corruption incarnate. He doesn't need God's forgiveness he says. Of course not. Why would a man who sees himself as the Messiah, need to ask God for forgiveness? Sending him to the White House only means he doesn't have to bribe politicians anymore. They have to bribe him!

The fact that Christian "leaders" are falling for this deception only proves to me that we are approaching the last days of Earth's history. They've said it couldn't happen before, but that hasn't stopped the devil from trying again and again and again; each time with more destructive results; each time with more death and destruction. And I believe he will keep at it until he brings the world down around him. Unfortunately, for the first time in history, mankind has the means with which to burn the surface of the planet to ashes. Isn't it interesting that Revelation describes a "lake of fire" being the final end of evil. Me, I'd like to avoid all that.

“For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth:
and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind.”
- Isaiah 65:17

Whether Trump wins or someone else does, things don't look good for our world. They always promise a utopia - a man-made heaven on Earth. There's no such thing and cannot be so long as men love power and worship themselves. If we do get a reprieve and someone decent does become the most powerful political figure in the world, we should get our affairs in order as soon as we can while there is still time. We should witness to the truth as loudly as possible and to all the Earth, because the end will surely come. Jesus' coming is not an invasion or a conquest. It is a rescue mission and at its conclusion the world will go up in flames and be cleansed that we may start over with a new Earth - pure, pristine and sinless.

The storm's coming. Get ready.

© 2016 by Tom King

1 comment:

Christi Berry said...

AMEN!! Eloquently stated, I so agree. May God protect us all!!