“The American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan (ACLU) and the law firm Wright & Schulte, LLC counter-sued the Lenawee County Health Department for violating the constitutional and civil rights of an Old Order Amish community by threatening to demolish every Amish-owned home in the county, in effect expelling an entire faith community from its borders.”
Paul’s Favorite Christmas Hymns and Carols
On today’s program we will be playing a selection of Paul’s favorite Christmas Hymns and Carols from the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols and Handel’s Messiah.
On Monday, December 23rd Paul spoke with Carl Trueman about his reponse in First Things to Christianity Today’s Mark Galli calling for President Trump’s removal. The audio of their conversation is below:
Carl R. Trueman is a professor in the Calderwood School of Arts and Humanities at Grove City College, Pa., and Senior Fellow at the Institute for Faith and Freedom. Carl is former Professor of Historical Theology and Church History at Westminster Theological Seminary, where he held the Paul Woolley Chair of Church History. He was editor of Themelios for nine years, has written more than a dozen books, and has contributed to multiple publications, including the Dictionary of Historical Theology and The Cambridge Companion to Reformation Theology.
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TODAY’S GUEST: Carl R. Trueman is a professor in the Calderwood School of Arts and Humanities at Grove City College, Pa., and Senior Fellow at the Institute for Faith and Freedom. Carl is former Professor of Historical Theology and Church History at Westminster Theological Seminary, where he held the Paul Woolley Chair of Church History. He was editor of Themelios for nine years, has written more than a dozen books, and has contributed to multiple publications, including the Dictionary of Historical Theology and The Cambridge Companion to Reformation Theology.
“… it seems to me that the idea of passionate, unquestioning support for Trump by this rather nebulous group, the evangelicals, is greatly overplayed in the rhetoric of public discourse.”
“This brings me to Mark Galli’s recent editorial in Christianity Today. In an impassioned appeal he summons evangelicals to dump the Donald. Indeed, he not only calls for Trump’s removal from office by impeachment or ballot box, but also declares that it is every Christian’s moral duty to support such a move.”
“Galli sees the situation as urgent: “If we don’t reverse course now, will anyone take anything we say about justice and righteousness with any seriousness for decades to come?” Yet, to ask the obvious question, what is the alternative? Now, that question can be used as a lazy, rhetorical way of justifying a vote for Trump—or for any status quo, however wicked. But I intend it as a serious inquiry: When someone calls for Trump to be thrown out of office by impeachment or the ballot box, it is reasonable to ask what the available alternatives are. As Mother Theresa is unavailable for the White House, we are really looking at Biden, Warren, or Sanders. “
“…[Galli] goes so far as to say that he believes the removal of Trump “is not a matter of partisan loyalties but loyalty to the Creator of the Ten Commandments.” That is an astounding claim for the editor of Christianity Today to make, for it involves him accusing every Trump voter of heinous sin, however reluctant or conflicted he may be.”
“Galli is not playing some sanctimonious Pharisee, standing in the Temple of Twitter, thanking God that he is not like other evangelicals—white supremacists, misogynists, or even this Trump supporter over here. But his editorial is symptomatic of the same underlying pathology. Evangelical elites are clearly as out of touch with the populist evangelical base as is the case in society in general. And lambasting populist evangelicals as hypocrites or dimwits will simply perpetuate the divide.”
“The Democrats have had it out for him from day one, and therefore nearly everything they do is under a cloud of partisan suspicion. “
“Mr. Trump did not have a serious opportunity to offer his side of the story in the House hearings on impeachment.
“But the facts in this instance are unambiguous: The president of the United States attempted to use his political power to coerce a foreign leader to harass and discredit one of the president’s political opponents. That is not only a violation of the Constitution; more importantly, it is profoundly immoral.
“Trump’s evangelical supporters have pointed to his Supreme Court nominees, his defense of religious liberty, and his stewardship of the economy, among other things, as achievements that justify their support of the president. We believe the impeachment hearings have made it absolutely clear, in a way the Mueller investigation did not, that President Trump has abused his authority for personal gain and betrayed his constitutional oath. The impeachment hearings have illuminated the president’s moral deficiencies for all to see. This damages the institution of the presidency, damages the reputation of our country, and damages both the spirit and the future of our people. None of the president’s positives can balance the moral and political danger we face under a leader of such grossly immoral character. “
“That he should be removed, we believe, is not a matter of partisan loyalties but loyalty to the Creator of the Ten Commandments.”
“It’s as if we’re each speaking a different language. That was certainly the shock some evangelicals felt after the election of Donald Trump, especially when they heard that 81 percent of white evangelicals voted for him. Most evangelical Christians like me exclaimed, ‘Who are these people? I know hardly anyone, let alone any evangelical Christian who voted for Trump.’ I describe evangelicals like me as ‘elite’ evangelicals….To call such evangelicals elite doesn’t mean we are superior in any way, only that we are a distinct social class, mostly defined by being leaders in evangelical institutions and movements…. And this class of evangelicals has discovered that we have family members so different they seem like aliens in our midst. These other evangelicals often haven’t finished college, and if they have jobs (and apparently a lot of them don’t), they are blue-collar jobs or entry level work. They don’t write books or give speeches; they don’t attend conferences of evangelicals for social justice or evangelicals for immigration reform. They are deeply suspicious of mainstream media. A lot of them voted for Donald Trump.”
“I have a friend who thinks that my critique of transgenderism misfires because I use the words “man” and “woman” (and “male” and “female”) to refer to biological facts, while believers in transgenderism use those words to refer to something else, namely, “one’s inner sense of gender.” For reasons I and others (e.g. Ryan Anderson, Paul McHugh) have set forth in various writings, I think no coherent account can be given of what the alleged reality (“gender”) is that people are supposed to have some sort of “inner sense” of. So Lincoln’s famous story applies: “If we call a tail a leg, how many legs does a dog have? The answer is four. That’s because a tail is a tail, not a leg, no matter what you call it.” ”