Pete Buttigieg: A Pharisee’s Attack on Evangelicals and Trump
Current Democratic “it” boy, Mayor Peter Buttigieg, has launched a stunning assault on President Trump’s Evangelical supporters. Their support “really frustrates me because the hypocrisy is unbelievable,” he says.
Here, you have somebody who not only acts in a way that is not consistent with anything that I hear in scripture or in church, where it’s about lifting up the least among us and taking care of strangers, which is another word for immigrants. And making sure that you’re focusing your effort on the poor.
I can’t believe that somebody who was caught writing hush money checks to adult film actresses is somebody they should be lifting up as the kind of person you want to be leading this nation.
Does Buttigieg think he can win any votes away from Trump by calling his supporters hypocrites? The arrogance. The feigned dismay: He is shocked … SHOCKED … that there are followers of Christ who voted for a guy who … wait for it, wait for it … isn’t perfect.
Questioning Trump’s Faith
The Democratic candidate’s attack on Christians who support Trump began with an attack questioning Trump’s faith.
“I’m reluctant to comment on another person’s faith,” he says. But he just can’t believe that the president’s actions are “the actions of somebody who believes in God. I just don’t understand how you can be as worshipful of your own self as he is and be prepared to humble yourself before God.”
Buttigieg is talking about style. Persona. A TV character. And he’s completely full of it. How do we know? Buttigieg never, ever would have said the same thing about Muhammad Ali. Could you imagine? “I just don’t understand how you can be as worshipful of your own self as Ali is and be prepared to humble yourself before God.”
Buttigieg is using the language of Christian faith to savage a political opponent who the Bible says is his brother in the Lord. It is as cynical as it is disgusting.
A glowing Washington Post profile lays out how Buttigieg plans on using the “Christian Left” to combat the “Christian Right.”
Jesus warned “if a house be divided against itself, that house cannot stand” (Mark 3:5). Is Buttigieg’s aim to bring down the House of God? Sure seems to be the Democratic party’s goal. In any event, it’s fair to point out that even if sincere, a believer deliberately and publicly pitting Christians against Christians isn’t doing God’s work. He’s doing the other guy’s.
“A new command I give you,” said Jesus. “Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (John 13:34-35)
What Buttigieg is doing ain’t got nothing to do with love.
What I Hear
Dr. Michael Brown has already dealt with the irony of Buttigieg knocking anyone’s Christianity on moral grounds. John Zmirak will be weighing in shortly on Buttigieg and those in the media celebrating his attack.
Personally, I need go no farther than this: He makes his pious proclamations while touting the wholesale slaughter and sale of children. That’s game set match.
Still it’s illuminating to go deeper. What strikes me most when listening to Buttigieg is how familiar his words sound. They’re straight out of the parable of the Pharisee and tax collector (Luke 18:9-11: Al Translation).
Then Jesus told this story to some politician who had great confidence in his own righteousness and scorned everyone not on board with his agenda. “Two men went to the Temple to pray. One was a Pharisee, and the other was a despised NY real estate tycoon. The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed this prayer: ‘I thank you, God, that I am not like other people — Deplorables, right-wing nut jobs, haters, believers in traditional marriage. I am certainly not like that ghastly President Trump.”
As is the case with any zealot — and perfectly in step with today’s Democratic party — he simply cannot fathom that anyone can reject his strict (progressive) ideology and be of good faith. You are a hypocrite, a false Christian. (You are worse than tax collectors, because being a Democrat we love taxes.)
Hypocrisy? Let’s Talk Hypocrisy!
And how hysterical is Buttigieg’s talk of hypocrisy? Forget whatever planks he has in his own eye. Just look at what he’s saying.
I am attacking the humility of another .. by puffing up my own piety. “I am reluctant to comment on another person’s faith … but I’m going to do it anyway, though I do not know Trump personally, nor the journey he is on.”
I will claim Trump does not know God because he enacts government policies I disagree with … as if the federal government is the church … all while championing the separation of church and state.
“The gospel is so much about inclusion and decency and humility and care for the least among us,” but Trump is “a wealthy, powerful, chest-thumping, self-oriented, philandering figure,” who should have no “credibility at all among religious people,”
I will treat Vice President Pence as a hypocrite, because he agrees with the president. “Either he abandoned his religious principles in order to be part of this campaign and administration. Or he has some very strange sense of destiny, that God somehow wants this in order to get somewhere better, which I think does very little credit to God.”
“Lifting up the least among us” — while approving even third term abortion.
“Taking care of strangers” — while condoning a border policies that guarantee death and rape and drugs and sex trafficking and child trafficking and labor exploitation and lower wages and increased disease and still more death for those strangers.
“Focusing your effort on the poor” — while supporting a party hellbent on destroying the economic system that has lifted 1.2 billion people out of poverty in less than 30 years. And condemning someone whose policies have sent welfare and unemployment rolls plummeting and wages and opportunities skyward.
Now, About Trump
So where does Donald Trump stand with the Lord? Buttigieg would have you believe his professions of faith are a hoax. A con for votes. An angle. Nobody truly knows but God and Trump. But I do know — and trust with my life — people who have grown close to him and who pray regularly with him. People, who, incidentally, were very suspicious of him. And they know far more about Trump’s walk than somebody firing at Trump’s faith from the cheap seats for cheap applause.
Our own publisher, Rev. James Robison has said it publicly. In over 50 years of ministry he has never met a man more open to receiving prayer and wisdom. He has also said publicly that we need to keep praying for Donald Trump because “we are seeing miracles.”
Buttigieg, if he truly wants to follow Jesus, he would heed Scripture’s calls to pray for Trump, instead of bearing the Pharisee curse of condemning the “sinner.”