There is growing sentiment in the evangelical community that much as the Democrat Party “left” Ronald Reagan almost 60 years ago, the Republican Party is now leaving conservative evangelicals behind.
When the 2016 GOP Primary season began, most pundits believed that Ted Cruz could very well sweep the vast majority of evangelical voters into his camp once Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum, and Marco Rubio were out of the race. However, along the way we realized that the evangelical vote was just as fractured as the rest of the party. Donald Trump has consistently been able to win about 1/3 of the evangelical vote from state to state, surprising most observers. Now, the question is “how evangelical are evangelical voters”?
Those evangelicals who don’t support Donald Trump already felt marginalized by the establishment GOP, now they are beginning to feel marginalized by the anti-establishment Trump wing of the Party. Pastor Douglas Wilson sums it up well in his recent post on how conservative American Christians have been betrayed. First by the establishment, then by the Trump’s pocketed pundits, and finally by Trump himself.
However, Pastor Trevin Wax digs even deeper and finds that we may no longer feel at home in the Republican Party because culturally, politically and faithfully, our nation has left evangelical Christians behind. While this might hurt, maybe it’s a good thing that we no longer “feel at home” because it reminds us of some important and eternal truths.
“I don’t feel at home in the Republican Party anymore.”
That’s the feeling of a growing number of church-going evangelicals who feel increasingly displaced these days.
Displaced culturally, because many Christian beliefs are now seen as “extreme,” such as the command to share the gospel, or the uniqueness of Jesus, or the definition of marriage.
Displaced politically, because the party that has made the greatest overtures to conservative Christians is morphing into a populist and nativist movement willing to abandon conservative principles for political gain…
The main reason we should not feel “at home” in a political party is because we already belong to a political society. It’s called the Church. It transcends national borders and breaks down worldly barriers. There, we don’t vote for a president; we bow before a King.
We should always feel in the world but not of the world, in America but not of America, in a political party but not of a political party. Embracing that tension is not weakness, but faithfulness.
So, take hope, Christian. The Church will be around long after today’s empires and political parties fade away. If you want to put down roots somewhere, put them in the soil of the Church.
After all, the gates of hell are shaking not because of an election, but because of Easter.
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