In case you missed it, a group of evangelicals wrote a letter to Donald Trump asking him to condemn the alt-Right. They claim that they are “American Religious Leaders,” but anyone who read the names of signers will quickly conclude that most of them are Southern Baptists. You can read it here.
As far as I can tell, Samuel Rodriguez of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference was the only court evangelical who signed the statement. (How much longer can this guy remain a court evangelical?) Read the list of signers. You will not find the signatures of Franklin Graham, Johnnie Moore, Paula White, or Jerry Falwell Jr.
A story at the conservative website Newsmax quotes court evangelical Robert Jeffress’s comments in a Wall Street Journal article on the statement. Here is a taste:
A lot of these people who signed are friends of mine,” Robert Jeffress, pastor of First Baptist Church in Dallas and a member of Trump’s advisory board, told the Journal. Jeffress was not asked to sign the letter, the Journal reported.
“I also know some of them who absolutely despise the president, and cannot get over the fact that a majority of evangelicals voted for him. It shows how little influence these leaders have in the election and over evangelicals.”
Jeffress seems to believe that a Christian leader’s “influence” is measured by how well his or her political beliefs mesh with “the majority.” I seem to remember Jesus saying something about a narrow road (Mt 7:14). Since when is 51% the standard by which Christians develop their political theology? The theological and biblical contortions Jeffress must make in order to remain a court evangelical never cease to amaze me.