Evangelicals: “Jerry Falwell Would Be Rolling Over in His Grave” Over Son’s Trump Endorsement

Donald Trump speaks in Reno, Nev. (photo credit: Darron Birgenheier via Flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0)

Major evangelical leaders have been quick to express dismay over Jerry Falwell Jr.’s green-lighting of Trump, none more so than John Stemberger, who helped lead the victory for Florida’s marriage amendment in 2008 (and is an occasional contributor to The Pulse):

‘The late Dr. Jerry Falwell Sr. would be rolling over in his grave if he knew the son who bore his name had endorsed the most immoral and ungodly man to ever run for President of the United States,’ Stemberger said in a statement provided to POLITICO. ‘It is one thing to allow the free exchange of ideas, even bad ideas, among college students on a Christian campus. It is quite another to give a glowing endorsement-like introduction calling Donald Trump … This in no way represents the legacy of Dr. Jerry Falwell, Sr.’

And he’s not the only one. Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council endorsed Ted Cruz. Peggy Nance of Concerned Women for America echoed Stemberger’s concerns. Marjorie Dannenfelser (another contributor to The Pulse) joined other pro-life women in urging pro-life voters to support anyone but Trump.

And Southern Baptist theologian Russell Moore tweeted:

Paul Dupont is the managing editor for ThePulse2016.com. Continue Reading

Rubio and Russell Moore Team Up, Demand Obama Acknowledge Christian Genocide Too

Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) (photo credit: Gage Skidmore)

Kudos to Sen. Marco Rubio for teaming up with Southern Baptist leading thinker Russell Moore to demand Pres. Obama acknowledge the Christian genocide taking place in the Middle East.

Of course, it is not just Christians; other minority religions are being persecuted too. But the word is that the Obama White House is balking at including Christians in the designation of victims of genocide:

“Reports suggest that the State Department is ready to designate the Islamic State’s terror against the Yazidis as genocide, which it clearly is, but they might not to do so for equally embattled Christian communities,” Rubio and Moore wrote. “This is only one part of a refusal to come to grips with the full weight of these facts.”

Doing so is not just symbolic; it triggers treaty obligations. It is the least we can do for all these victims: name the truth they are experiencing.

Maggie Gallagher is a senior fellow at the American Principles Project. Continue Reading

Baptist Russell Moore: Evangelicals Must Oppose Trump

Dr. Russell D. Moore (photo via Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0)

Yesterday, Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptist Convention’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, went on CNN to say that Donald Trump’s attacks on the core American value of religious liberty must be opposed by evangelicals:

JOHN BERMAN: And, Russell, you are an evangelical, and you disagree with a lot of the tenets of Islam, to say the least, yet, you say that evangelicals must support religious freedom for the Muslims and denounce Donald Trump. Explain.

RUSSELL D. MOORE, PRESIDENT, SOUTHERN BAPTIST ETHICS & LIBERTY COMMISSION: Yes. Religious freedom is not just for us, but everyone. If you had told me that we were talking about banning people from the United States because of the religious faith, and un-violent, law abiding people, and I would have thought that it was a science fiction movie released for Christmas time. I would not assume we were talking about the presidential race for the office held by the leaders such as Washington and Lincoln. And it is disturbing. What is important to recognize that the freedom of religious is not a government grant. Donald Trump did not give it to us, and he can’t take it away. God gave us freedom of religion and conscious. Sometimes Donald Trump may get them confused, but we never should. He is exploiting a horrific time of war to bring up things that are not only at odds with the constitutional freedoms, but also with the God-given rights.

Continue Reading

Southern Baptists, Catholics, Lutherans Endorse FADA

Photo credit: elPadawan via Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Southern Baptist theologian Russell Moore joined the Catholic bishops and other religious leaders in endorsing the First Amendment Defense Act, which prevents the federal government from discriminating against those who believe marriage is the union of a husband and wife:

“In our pluralistic and inclusive society this belief deserves protection, while ensuring that those who disagree are not denied any benefit or service under federal law to which they are entitled,” the letter said, adding FADA “does both.”

Moore told Baptist News that FADA “is a common-sense law that provides necessary protection to millions of Americans who have sincere religious beliefs about marriage and sexuality. The need for such a bill has become obvious as legal rulings and confusion over existing religious liberty legislation have left many Americans vulnerable to overreach by the federal government.”

Maggie Gallagher is a senior fellow at the American Principles Project. Continue Reading

Southern Baptist’s Russell Moore to Evangelicals: Trump Is Not Your Friend

Dr. Russell D. Moore (photo via Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0)

In The New York Times this morning, the influential Baptist theologian Russell Moore calls on evangelicals to reconsider their support for Trump. There should be no religious test for office, he tells his fellow Baptists, but a careful scrutiny of character and positions.

Trump’s view of women, he says, is that of a “Bronze Age warlord,” publicly boasting he gets to sleep with some of the “top women of the world” and discarding two wives.

He also points out that Trump ridicules evangelicals, and has even urged that evangelical missionaries not be allowed to return to the U.S. for treatment for Ebola.

Winning is good, but for Christians, it can’t trump love.

Read the whole thing here.

Maggie Gallagher is a senior fellow at American Principles in Action. Continue Reading

Russell Moore to GOP: God Talk Is No Longer Enough

Dr. Russell D. Moore (photo via Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0)

The threats to Christian freedom and inclusion in this country are multiplying but the GOP has yet to rise to the defense, preferring to flee anything that offends the Human Rights Campaign’s powerful network. Russell Moore, president of the Southern Baptists’ Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, lays down a new call to action:

“In recent years candidates have assumed that they can win over evangelicals by learning Christian slogans, by masking political rallies as prayer meetings, and by basically producing a long-form new birth certificate to prove they’ve been born again. This sort of identity politics is a luxury of a past era when evangelicals were part of a silent majority in the U.S., with our First Amendment freedoms assumed and guaranteed. That is not the present situation. . .

In 2016, it doesn’t matter whether a candidate knows the words to hymns. What will matter to evangelicals is how the candidate, if elected president, will articulate and defend religious-liberty rights. This is about more than whether the candidate will repeat clichés about appointing Supreme Court justices who will “interpret the law, not make the law.” We want to know how this potential president will rein in an administrative apparatus that has plunged the country into ongoing culture wars over, for instance, compelling virgin nuns to pay for birth control.

This also will mean a vision of religious liberty that is about more than pandering to an interest group. Some of today’s most pressing religious-liberty questions concern groups who, unlike evangelicals, have no large voting blocs.

Continue Reading