Evangelical Christians lash ‘grossly immoral’ Donald Trump
A leading US evangelical Christian publication, has turned against President Donald Trump - writing that he is "morally lost and confused" and should be removed from office.
In an editorial, Christianity Today said it generally steers clear of politics but "we do feel it necessary from time to time to make our own opinions on political matters clear."
"The facts in this instance are unambiguous," it said.
"The President of the United States attempted to use his political power to coerce a foreign leader to harass and discredit one of the president's political opponents.
"That is not only a violation of the Constitution; more importantly, it is profoundly immoral." Christianity Today was founded by Billy Graham, a prominent Christian evangelist who died last year, but the Graham family is no longer associated with the publication.
Franklin Graham, Billy Graham's son, is also an influential Christian evangelical leader and a staunch Trump supporter. His ministry publishes its own magazine, Decision.
Christianity Today, which has a circulation of around 130,000, said Trump has "dumbed down the idea of morality in his administration.
"He himself has admitted to immoral actions in business and his relationship with women, about which he remains proud," it said.
"His Twitter feed alone - with its habitual string of mischaracterisations, lies, and slanders - is a near perfect example of a human being who is morally lost and confused."
Christianity Today said the congressional hearings that led to Mr Trump's impeachment by the House of Representatives on Wednesday "have illuminated the president's moral deficiencies for all to see".
From @markgalli:— Christianity Today (@CTmagazine) December 19, 2019
To the many evangelicals who continue to support Mr. Trump in spite of his blackened moral record. Remember who you are and whom you serve.
Consider how your justification of Mr. Trump influences your witness to your Lord and Savior https://t.co/NVdQjg4odC
"Trump's evangelical supporters have pointed to his Supreme Court nominees, his defence of religious liberty, and his stewardship of the economy, among other things, as achievements that justify their support of the president," it said.
"We believe the impeachment hearings have made it absolutely clear... that President Trump has abused his authority for personal gain and betrayed his constitutional oath."
The magazine asked: "Can we say with a straight face that abortion is a great evil that cannot be tolerated and, with the same straight face, say that the bent and broken character of our nation's leader doesn't really matter in the end?
"Whether Mr. Trump should be removed from office by the Senate or by popular vote next election -- that is a matter of prudential judgment.
"That he should be removed, we believe, is not a matter of partisan loyalties but loyalty to the Creator of the Ten Commandments."
Mr Trump enjoys solid support among white evangelical Christians although a Fox News poll in October found that those backing him had slipped from 81 per cent in the 2016 election to around 70 per cent now.