Hanging over a cliff by a twig: Last chance for evangelical leaders to avert disaster

Pat Robertson

About six weeks ago, I published an article for my blog – Turn This Nation Around – entitled “An Appeal to Evangelical Leaders – Come Back from the Precipice!” In the article, I urged the many “evangelical” leaders who have supported and endorsed Donald Trump for President to reconsider their support before it was too late for them and their ministries.

The argument they were making about needing to elect Trump because of possible Supreme Court nominees was refuted and demonstrably proven to be false given Trump’s already “negotiating” for supporting a certain lawyer to be a judge in Florida.

Sadly, my article fell on deaf ears. Now, after the latest of many-to-come revelations about Trump’s coarse and carnal nature – especially in how he treats women – these evangelicals have chosen to not only venture closer to the precipice that leads to the political and spiritual abyss. They have actually taken the first leap off the cliff.

In what is playing out like some bizarre episode of the Twilight Zone, the very people who should be condemning Trump’s braggadocio and crude attitude, not to mention possible felonious behavior, toward women are his most ardent defenders.

Yes, that’s right.  Trump’s defense is not coming from pornographers such as Larry Flynt – like Bill Clinton’s did. Nope. Trump’s “Christian” supporters are explaining away the indefensible – treating women like dirt, playthings to be used however he wanted.

It’s hard for me to even comprehend that this is the state of the American Church today! When men and women, formerly motivated by their Christian, Biblical faith, suddenly make the arguments of pagans, perverts, and left-wing radicals, something is terribly wrong. (Remember how the left wing media defended Clinton – saying that perjury was acceptable since it was only in relation to sex?)

Ben Carson says it is no worse than “rap music.” Really, Ben? The same music that calls for killing police and raping women – that music should be our standard for the next President?

Jerry Falwell, Jr. says it is just a Republican RINO conspiracy that should be ignored. Really, Jerry? Was it actually Reince Priebus who said those things on a soap opera set and not truly Donald Trump?

Pat Robertson said what Trump said in the video was “macho.” Really, Pat? Would you like to give me a Biblical reference that calls treating women like dirt as “honorable” and “manly”?

Of course, one of the arguments being desperately made by Trump’s supporters is to deflect to Bill Clinton’s horrendous behavior as a comparative. But, that’s simply using the phony “slightly pregnant” argument.

Either all sexual assault is wrong, or none of it is – period. Every one of these “evangelical” Trump supporters screamed to the rafters about Bill Clinton’s treatment of women – rightly so. Now, they throw morality out the window with stupid, irrelevant clichés like, “Well, we’re not electing a Sunday School teacher.”

DUH! Maybe if we did, America wouldn’t have the multitudinous problems it now faces.

Look, Bill and Hill gave us this ugly era of American paganism (with generous help from a feckless Congress at the time), but Trump was part of that era just as much as the Clintons were.

Some leaders have said, “Well, Trump apologized and asked God for forgiveness for what he said right before the debate.”

Okay, two questions:

I read Trump’s apology. I’m still not sure if he really was sorry he said the things he said, or if he was sorry for those who were offended by them. Was it really an apology? With Trump it’s often hard to know because “he’s never wrong.” Someone else is usually the scapegoat.

Second, it is all well and good if Trump asked God for forgiveness for his words and behavior, but did he apologize to all the women he fondled, groped, and most likely sexually assaulted if his words are to be believed?

If he does that, then I’m inclined to believe his repentance is genuine rather than something Mike Huckabee dreamed up for him as political strategy.

Then there is the other issue involved with all this – is it true? If it is, then Trump has committed several felonies (sexual assault is actually a felony). He should be prosecuted and is not fit to hold office.

(Please spare me the Hillary and Bill comparisons at this point. I argued even more strongly 20 years ago that they both deserved prison for their crimes. Two wrongs don’t make a right.)

But, if these boasts by Trump aren’t true, then he is a delusional liar who is psychologically unfit to hold the highest office in the land. Remember, this wasn’t some 16 year old high school guy bragging about his first “conquest” to his buddies. This was a 60 year old professional man speaking to a national media reporter.

In either case, this latest revelation of Trump’s abject lack of any moral compass should have sent all of those “evangelical” leaders who stubbornly supported him to their prayer rooms on their knees begging God for forgiveness for their gullibility and arrogance.

Gentlemen, it’s not too late! You may have plunged over the precipice toward the abyss, but you are still hanging on by the thinnest branch. You have one chance left to salvage both your faith and your ministries.

It is time to put on the sackcloth and ashes, humble yourself before the Lord, and confess your grand mistake in putting political expediency above basic Biblical standards of morality.

If you don’t, how do you expect to ever speak out against “same-sex” marriage again? How do you ever hope to have any credibility in the current conflict against the “gaystapo’s” transgender war? How do you ever hope to have the support of trusting followers again if you carry them over the precipice with you?

My sincere prayer is that you will accept the Lord’s chastising and learn from your experience. You could end up being better leaders for it.

But, if you persist in your pride, greed, and “willful ignorance”, the American Church will suffer greatly because of your failure in this spiritual crisis situation.

The election is still a month away. If you think the “October surprises” about Trump’s past are done, you really are being fools.

The Clintons are leaving nothing to chance in this election. Even Trump’s attacks on Hillary during the debate on Sunday night were planned. By Trump “hitting the girl”, he has forever cemented the reputation, that has been growing, that he is a serial abuser of women. And, attempting to compare his behavior to that of Bill Clinton’s only strengthens the “victim card” that Hillary is content to play all the way into the White House.

The way things are going, Trump will take down a large percentage of Congressional Republicans with him. If Clinton becomes President with a Democrat Congress, the Supreme Court won’t matter one bit. The socialist tidal wave she prays for will sweep over all of America.

If that happens, you will have no following, no donations, no credibility, and no platform from which to speak. Those who did believe in you will abandon you as “just another loser.”

At this point, if you want to help stop it, you must renounce Trump and put all of your remaining efforts into electing/re-electing the good, solid, “real” conservatives who are running for the House and Senate.

Trump may be using this election to enrich himself, feed his ego, and start his own “Roger Ailes-assisted” TV network, but he will drop you the second he loses the election.

Is that how you want things to end? Are you that willing to help hasten America’s ultimate destruction?

Either you take a rational, Biblical stand now, or it will be too late to salvage much of anything. The time for choosing is at hand. Will it be the Biblical Christ you follow, or will it be the “golden calf” of Trump Tower?

Russ Hepler

Russ Hepler is a pastor, teacher, political activist, author, and conference speaker with over 30 years of experience. He holds a B.A. from Messiah College and an M.A.R. from Evangelical School of Theology. He has been an issues’ advocate, a campaign volunteer for local, state, and federal candidates, Regional Field Director for PA Christian Coalition, president of a county chapter of Pennsylvanians for Human Life, local Republican Committeeman, and an elected member of a town council. He is also a former and current homeschooler and taught in a Christian school (middle school History and Bible) for a number of years. He was formerly a blog writer for The Federalist Papers Project with over 900 articles published. He has been a guest on the American Family Radio program Today’s Issues with Tim Wildmon and on the Bill Martinez Live radio show. One of his sermons – Father’s Day – Where Have All the Heroes Gone? – was featured on the American Pastors’ Network. His first book – Yes! We Can Turn This Nation Around! A Practical Guide for Christian Political Involvement – was published in 2012. It has recently been updated and expanded for 2016 – Yes! We STILL Can Turn This Nation Around! An Updated and Expanded Practical Guide for Christian Political Involvement. Both works are available at Amazon.com. He and his wife, Sherry, have founded Transformation 1202 Ministries to educate, encourage, and challenge people of faith to get involved in the political and cultural issues of our day. The ministry has a website, a blog, and a Facebook page: Turn This Nation Around.

  1. You are absolutely right. When we are abandoned by those whose calling is to lead us in the direction of right we are doubly betrayed. As to the Supreme Court, it won’t matter if by some outrageous turn of events Trump were elected because we know from experience that if you don’t have a Senate with you you can’t get a nominee confirmed anyway. He could appoint the greatest Constitutionalist America has ever known – James Madison risen again – and a Democrat Senate – which he is now engineering – will vote him down. There is no upside with Donald Trump except that he has exposed the rottenness in the Republican Party with which many have been in denial. That is his only good deed.

  2. Praise God for you! This is a breath of fresh air in what has become a sea of delusion. I actually wrote a blog the day before Trump’s “reality tv” release in which I offer a possible purpose for what we’re seeing within the church right now. Here’s the link if you didn’t see it: http://thenewamericana.com/2016/10/07/stirred-not-shaken/
    Again, thank you for this article; it gives me hope that we’re not all dropping like flies!

  3. I fear it will fall on deaf ears. And, truthfully, so many church members I know have supported Trump since he entered that it would NOT make much of a difference if the leadership now stated it was anathema to vote for him. I mean that while we still had Cruz and a few others who would be significantly better candidates with a much higher chance of beating Hillary, they were for Trump. We we insulted and chastised by many in our church for not supporting Trump then and nothing has changed. People are not willing to let the Truth permeate their preformed opinions. It would be good for the “church” if the leaders would take the right stand, even if the sheep refused to follow, but it seems that these leaders are more afraid of losing the so-called sheep support than standing on principle. There will be a price to be paid. It will be very harsh and the most vulnerable will suffer the most, but it is what it is.

  4. Thank you for a brilliant piece on the fall from grace we are witnessing from our spiritual leaders and institutions. It is beyond shocking, and I too am completely confounded by it. I suspect another force at work here, and it certainly is not God.

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