Who is Trump calling a 'nasty guy'?

Bible

In an election year that will rank as perhaps the oddest in history, Donald Trump last fall tweeted his displeasure with an attack from … an evangelical leader.

What weird corner of the universe are we living in?

When Trump said that Southern Baptist leader Russell Moore is a “nasty guy,” he was referencing a person that only months before had never crossed his path. New York City is far from Nashville, geographically and in every other way. Moore, the president of the SBC’s “Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission,” is unlike any other SBC leader before him.

A former staffer for a Democrat congressman from Mississippi, Moore is far to the left of his predecessors, including his immediate predecessor, Richard Land. For generations, the SBC was front-loaded with Jerry Falwell types, but no more. Or rather, no Moore.

The urbane Moore seeks to make the SBC, the country’s largest Protestant denomination, easier on the eyes for the secular world. No more legalism, no more politically incorrect statements. Moore clearly takes pleasure in his task, which goes far beyond the mission statement of the ERLC. His smooth declarations and writing and speaking platforms (“Face the Nation” and The New York Times) are building Moore’s personal brand, even as he takes the SBC in a leftward direction.

Make no mistake, Moore is clearly moving left. His personal animosity for Donald Trump surfaced during the presidential campaign last year, as the nation watched the real estate developer emerge from a pack of 17 Republican candidates. We could count on one hand people who thought Trump would actually win. When he began to gain momentum, Moore jumped into the fray with several … well, nasty attacks on Trump. Taking to Twitter and left-wing newspaper perches, Moore implored fellow evangelicals not to vote for Trump. He had never and has still never summoned nearly the same passion for the sins of Barack Obama. He even invited Hillary Clinton to a candidate’s forum.

But observers could not shake the feeling that Russell Moore really had a visceral dislike of Trump. It was breathtaking and infuriating, all at the same time.

Moore, who has posed for grinning photo ops with Obama and other leftists, and who advocates for more “whimsy” from hard-core evangelicals, flayed Trump in public; and by extension, he flayed Trump’s supporters.

It was all an unseemly display from a man from the genteel South. I would strongly encourage readers to view the comprehensive case against Russell Moore at Pulpit and Pen, one of the leading research groups among conservative evangelicals.

Moore, softer than a tub of butter on a Biloxi picnic table when it comes to immigration reform, seems to think his mandate includes opposing Trump on political grounds. This is a curious stance for a religious leader, especially one who poses as a classic evangelical.

According to a report:

Invoking fellow Southern Baptists in his rebuke of Donald Trump a total of seven times, Russell Moore strongly sent the message that those in his denomination agree with his assessment that the president’s executive order temporarily halting immigration from hostile nations is morally objectionable.

In a letter to Donald Trump, which he also sent to majority leaders in both the House and Senate and published in the Washington Post this morning, Moore used his position as president of the SBC’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission to imply that Southern Baptists monolithically condemn the recent executive order.

This is really an outrageous display of politicking from Moore, who is the polar opposite of his equally political spiritual ancestors, like Falwell.

Trump, while a candidate, seemed to understand that Moore was trying to derail his bid to become president. Although there was plenty of smart analysis that showed Moore’s position would pave the way for a truly diabolical Clinton, the ERLC prez tap-danced around that reality. Amazingly, key SBC leaders sided with Moore.

More recently, Russell Moore has come under real fire from within his denomination, which funds the ERLC to the tune of $3.5 million each year. The pushback was so strong (including from SBC big Jack Graham and Prestonwood Baptist Church, which threatened to withhold key funding should Moore continue in his leftward march) that Moore was forced to put on a mask of civility and “apologize.” His apology, though, was General Patton-like, measured, through clenched teeth. Because, of course, no one else is as smart as Russell Moore, and his “leadership” shouldn’t be questioned.

My prediction: Moore will weather these storms, because he has too many key allies around him. He will not modify his positions, but will elegantly double-down as time goes on. Why?

Russell Moore is a leftist. This is hard to swallow for evangelicals. But I say, watch what he does going forward. He will hire more Karen Swallow Priors. He will continue to be the useful idiot of New York-based media. He will continue to show his contempt for Bible-believing conservative Christians (who pay his salary!).

And he will revel in it. Enjoying finger foods and photo ops with our nation’s enemies means a lot to change agents who have infiltrated evangelicalism.

Expect Moore of the same.


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Who is Trump calling a 'nasty guy'?
Source: WND