taking the words of Jesus seriously

My friend Ron Sider has just published an urgently important book: The Spiritual Danger of Donald Trump: 30 Evangelical Christians on Justice, Truth, and Moral Integrity. It is available  on June 1st.

The chapter writers—Republicans, Independents and Democrats—deal with hard questions: What does the Bible say about Donald Trump’s character? His personal sexual behavior? His constant lies? His nasty personal attacks on those who disagree with him?  His political agenda and programs?  Does Donald Trump unite or divide the nation?  Does white evangelical support for Donald Trump help or hinder evangelism? What criteria should biblical Christians use as they choose who to vote for this November?

This book does not hesitate to state  hard truths.  Chris Thurman’s chapter points out :“After just three years in office, Trump has made over 16,000 false or misleading statements, a number previously unimaginable when it comes to the most powerful person in the world. “

Mark Galli, former editor in chief of Christianity Today says in his article: “In his tweets and comments, Mr. Trump habitually ridicules, describing his opponents as ‘unhinged,’ ‘crazy,’ ‘lying,’ ‘disgraced,’ ‘losers.’ When our nation’s leader speaks with this disdain and contempt about those with whom he disagrees, he’s making America worse.”

Peter Wehner is a longtime Republican, holding important positions in the administrations of Presidents Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush. But  Wehner says bluntly: “Evangelical Christians should acknowledge the profound damage that’s being done to their movement by its political relationship—its love affair—with a president who is an ethical and moral wreck.”

 Prominent historian, Randall Balmer says,  “Evangelicalism died on November 8, 2016. “

READ: Voting for the Common Good

Napp Nazworth was a long time political editor for the conservative magazine Christian Post before he resigned late last year protesting their attack on Christianity Today’s courageous call for  Donald Trump’s removal. Nazworth says: “Evangelicals lost their away and elected a race-baiter, misogynist and fool. “

In his powerful essay,  Ron Sider pleads with white evangelical centristss not to repeat their timid silence of 2016. Many of those leaders did not support Trump but they did not have the courage to tell their people why he was such a problem. The result?  81% of white evangelicals voted for Donald Trump.

Leaders like Fuller Seminary president Mark Labberton, Sojourners president Jim Wallis, and former Eastern University president Roberta Hestenes all urge Christians to listen carefully to this important work. I agree!

This is how Roberta Hestenes puts it: “The authors warn of the spiritual damage to the soul and witness of evangelicalism in America. Issues of character, speech and behavior as well as policy choices on racial justice, immigration, treatment of women, and the needs of the poor should be shaped by the teaching and example of Jesus and the Scriptures. Christian witness and faithfulness to the gospel are all at stake.”

 And Jim Wallis says bluntly: “I pray that this book will help spark conversations across the country that will finally end the silence of white evangelicals. It’s time to move from caution to courage in the most important election of our lifetimes.”

Here is my suggestion: Get several copies (see the special discount) and give them to family and friends with whom you find it hard to discuss President Trump’s policies. You can tell them you would be glad to listen to their reflections on the book after they read it. You can get multiple copies at a 40% discount: go to wipfandstock.com, enter the name of the book in the search field,  and use the  discount code DANGER40.

Now is the time to act.

About The Author


Tony Campolo is Professor of Sociology at Eastern University, and was formerly on the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania. For 40 years, he founded and led the Evangelical Association for the Promotion of Education, an organization that created and supported programs serving needy communities in the Third World as well as in “at risk” neighborhoods across North America. More recently, Dr. Campolo has provided leadership for the Red Letter Christians movement. He blogs regularly at his own website. Tony and his wife Peggy live near Philadelphia, and have two children and four grandchildren.

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