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CAROL STREAM, Illinois (ChurchMilitant.com) - Elite white evangelicals have launched vicious attacks on Trump 'deplorables,' claiming that the Capitol Hill "atrocity" was "brought to us by the white, evangelical church in America."
Belying the religious, racial and class diversity of Trump's supporters, evangelicals like clergywoman Tish Harrison Warren are accusing the "white American church" and the "heresy of Christian nationalism" for the Epiphany protest.
Writing in the flagship evangelical magazine Christianity Today (CT), Warren noted that "the symbols of faith — Jesus' name, cross and message — have been co-opted to serve the cultish end of Trumpism."
CT, started by world-famous evangelist Dr. Billy Graham, called for Trump to be impeached and removed from office in 2019 "out of loyalty to the Creator of the Ten Commandments."
A celebrity lineup of white evangelicals from megachurch pastors John Piper and Rick Warren to Baptist ethicist Russell Moore to TV preacher Beth Moore and missiologist Ed Stetzer — who remained largely silent during months of Black Lives Matter rioting, arson and vandalism — are condemning Trump and his loyalists as the foot soldiers of an idolatrous insurrection.
The evangelical leaders freeze out the significant portion of Trump-voting Catholics who made their presence at the Capitol Hill rally felt by praying the Rosary and carrying large crosses, as well as non-white pro-Trump celebrities with substantial online audiences.
The racially diverse pro-Trump influencers include Indian-born evangelical Dinesh D'Souza, Latino Catholic evangelist Jesse Romero, African-American conservatives Candace Owens, Wayne Dupree, Anthony Brian Logan and Larry Elder, and Asian Catholic Michelle Malkin.
Most of the 30 evangelical writers warning fellow believers about the president in a book titled The Spiritual Danger of Donald Trump, are "white and male," concedes the liberal Protestant magazine Christian Century in a book review.
"An alarming number of Catholic clergy contributed to an environment that led to the fatal riots at the U.S. Capitol," writes homosexualist Fr. James Martin in left-wing Jesuit magazine America, debunking Warren's monoracial finger-pointing.
Speaking to Church Militant, cultural critic Fr. Athanasius St. Michel addressed the issue of anti-Trump white evangelicals and "the suicidal alternative facing the church in the gospel-hating Marxist Joe Biden."
"Why have white evangelical leaders turned with such vicious invective on Trump supporters, knowing fully well that the gospel-hating Marxist Joe Biden is the suicidal alternative facing the church?" he asked.
The cultural critic told Church Militant that at the heart of the problem is the corrosive cancer of identity politics, which has taken deep roots among elite white evangelicals.
Fr. Athanasius lamented:
Caught up in a strange mental derangement of self-loathing, the privileged white Protestants exchange Jesus and His Church for Marx and his State and hate with a visceral loathing those who question the integrity, sanity and deliverability of their new religion.
Anti-Trump progressive politics has morphed into a demonic religion of its own. It contains some cosmetic similarities to Christianity but has the advantage of containing a politically attractive message combining what appears to be fairness and justice.
Baylor University professor of political science and scholar of contemporary elite ideologies Dr. Darel Paul defines the American "elite" as the top 20–25% of households "whose income has actually grown over the past 35 years."
It is "that social class that has most separated itself from the rest of the country in terms of educational attainment, family structure, residence, lifestyle and cultural values," Dr. Paul writes, a description Fr. Athanasius believes to be characteristic of white evangelical leaders.
Mixed-race evangelical and member of the London Assembly David Kurten told Church Militant he found it "ridiculous to suggest that Trump's MAGA campaign and protest is evidence of white supremacy in the church."
Kurten, candidate for London's mayor, explained:
President Trump has done more to raise the living standards of black people in the U.S. that any other president, with many more black and ethnic minority people voting for him in 2020. He is far more in line with orthodox Christianity than the cultural Marxist opposition who want to allow more unborn children to be killed and spread LGBGTQQIAAPP* "education" to America's children. This Trump-bashing cleric needs to fix her broken moral compass.
"I'm suspect of the motives of those within churches willing to use the weapons of the enemy to punish and displace their rivals for leadership of institutions. Too many appear to be willing collaborators," Catholic academic John Zmirak told Church Militant.
Rejecting the charge that "many of us have confused Donald Trump with Jesus Christ," Zmirak offers two possible explanations for elite white evangelical leaders "adopting such a cringeworthy double standard" on Trump and Biden.
"There's something so profoundly servile inside some Christians that they actually prefer the Church be persecuted than that it resist actively. Maybe they're pacifists or masochists," Zmirak writes.
Secondly, "these people can sniff out where the power is" and "want to be on record as perfectly harmless, should legal persecution come," he notes.
They hope that throwing Trump-friendly Christians under the bus will vaccinate them against malicious tax audits of their boondoggle nonprofits, or attacks on their tax-exempt status — or much, much worse, attacks at the hands of emboldened Antifa. Some of these Christian leaders may unconsciously be auditioning for positions with the new, State-dominated 'Patriotic Church' — you know, like they have in China.
Evangelicals like Dr. Franklin Graham, Dr. Eric Metaxas and Dr. Robert Gagnon continue to support Donald Trump.
Gagnon, author of the definitive text on The Bible and Homosexual Practice, argues that the threat to his entire existence as an evangelical — from his job and family to transgender speech laws, LGBTQ+ agenda, free speech, posting on social media, children's education and free exercise of religion — is exclusively from the Left.
"And you think that Trump was the big threat to the Republic? Such thinking is either grossly uninformed or delusional," writes Gagnon.