Thursday, March 03, 2016

Donald Derangement Syndrome

Back in the Bush administration there were people afflicted with Bush Derangement Syndrome, a pathological, blind hatred for Bush and anything he did. This pathology bled into the Obama administration where every ill, no matter how recent it was or whether or not it had a reasonable link to Bush, was attributed to Bush. If you played a drinking game where every time President Obama whined about what a mess he inherited (a mess he claimed to be the solution to. "The oceans will stop rising!"), you would be stone drunk in no time. Many on the left are still afflicted with this disease.

With the Obama administration we saw the rise of Obama Derangement Syndrome. The two big symptoms indicating that someone had this disease were a) the insistence that Obama is a Muslim and b) that he was really born somewhere other than the U.S.. On the first, while it is abundantly clear that President Obama is not a Christian under any orthodox definition of the term, he is also not a Muslim. He seems to harbor a certain affection toward Islam but that is not a disqualifier for the presidency. Fortunately President Obama's administration is limping to the finish line and will soon be little more than a historical footnote.

In this primary season leading up to the 2016 general election, no one could have anticipated that virtually the entire focus up to now has been on one unlikely candidate, Donald J. Trump. He has sucked all of the air out of the room so that even the criminal investigation of Dem front-runner Mrs. William Clinton has gotten no attention (which is compounded by the media being sold out on her candidacy). It is like the Dems are not even having a primary, all of the focus and enthusiasm (negative and positive) has been aimed at Trump.

The whole Trump thing is a train-wreck but it is one that we the people have created. If we had not as a nation rapidly been granting more and more fiat power to the executive branch and transferring law making power from the legislative branch to judicial branch, then having a megalomaniac like the current occupant of the White House and people like Donald Trump who want to replace him wouldn't be so dangerous. As it is the executive branch personified by the President and the vast regulatory bureaucracy has become far more powerful than was intended at the expense of the legislative branch. This makes a whack job more dangerous than they should be. When you add the general and legitimate anger people have at the government and ruling class with a heaping helping of the reality show celebrity culture and it was kind of impossible to not have a candidate like Trump come along.

The response of the church to Trump has been interesting. In some parts Trump is seen as a necessary evil, sort of like political chemotherapy that we need to purge the cancer of an out of control government. He may be a dirty SOB but he is our dirty SOB. Others have taken the Trump candidacy and his somewhat unexpected support by many people who claim to be "evangelical", a term which is pretty much useless today, as a cause du jour to rail against on social media complete with the Hitler references. I understand the concern about Trump but I kind of wonder where they have been hiding all this time and why Trump is the issue where we let our outrage show.

It would be nice if certain segments of the church were as outraged by widespread  biblical illiteracy in the church, the turning of a blind eye or even a warm welcome to sin and acceptance of casual heresy in much of the church as they are about Donald Trump. Romans 13 is pretty clear, God knows what He is doing when it comes to leaders, even if that also means that the church should be a prophetic counter-voice when necessary. What we should be concentrating on is the danger of false teachers within the church. Nobody with a modicum of Biblical discernment thinks Trump is a Christian but there are lots of people that are widely accepted as Christian who promote and profit by teaching error as truth to the church. One false teacher with a best selling book that teaches falsehood to a largely Christian audience is far more dangerous to the church than a Trump or Clinton Presidency.

Trump is a clown, a carnival barker with a private jet. We know who and what he is. As long as we do, Trump is no threat to the church. People who talk the religious talk while pushing heresy on the church, infiltrating and weakening the church are a much greater and a very real and present threat to the church. Whether Trump will "save the country" or "destroy the country" is really not the overriding concern of the church. The ravenous wolves who wound and devour the sheep? That is the proper target for our discernment and our prophetic voice.

No comments: