During World War II film director Frank Capra, serving as a member of the U.S. Army and acting under orders of Army Chief of Staff General George C. Marshall, made a series of informational films entitled “Why We Fight.” Their purpose, as Marshall put it, was to “explain to our boys in the Army why we are fighting, and the principles for which we are fighting.” It was a necessary project then, and the concept is a useful one for me just now. I’m not going to make any films, but I would like to try to explain what I’m fighting for at present.
Some of you out there, our patient readers, may perhaps have wondered why some of us here at “The Five Pilgrims” have been trying again and again to explain why Christians should not support Donald Trump. First let me state a couple of things that are not the reasons for our efforts.
We are not trying to make Donald Trump lose the election. He doesn’t need any help with losing. During the primaries, polls consistently showed that any one of the major Republican candidates would have defeated Clinton–except Trump. He alone among the major Republican candidates consistently lost to Hillary in a hypothetical head-to-head race. Since receiving the nomination, Trump has made no effort to unite the party, has fielded the weakest “ground game” of any presidential candidate in modern memory, and has behaved erratically, engaging in wars of words with a Gold-Star family and a former beauty pageant winner. As we all knew, his closet had to be practically bulging with skeletons, which provided the Democrats and their media the material needed for the recent (and probably ongoing) most unsurprising of October Surprises. Trying to make Donald Trump lose the election would be the most superfluous of efforts. A thousand blogs like ours couldn’t make his defeat any more certain.
Neither are we trying to secure the election of a good president this year, much as we all long for that outcome. The last realistic chance for the election of a good–or merely acceptable–president in 2016 ended in May when Ted Cruz dropped out of the race for the Republican nomination, assuring that Trump would be the nominee. Trump clearly couldn’t beat Hillary, and even if by some fluke he did, he would be no better. Apart from an almost miraculous divine intervention (e.g., the Republican National Committee replacing Trump with a good man as candidate) our hopes of a good president now look toward 2020.
But we do have something to accomplish in what remains of this election. We want to do our small part to show the watching world that there are Christians in America who have not been pressured, guilt-manipulated, brow-beaten, baited, or deceived into giving up biblical principles in order to win an election. We’d like to warn as many of our fellow Christians as possible that by giving their support to Trump they will besmirch their testimony, put a stumbling block in the way of seekers and new Christians, cause the Gospel to be evil spoken of, give occasion to the enemies of God to blaspheme, and get nothing–absolutely nothing–in exchange. In short, we’d like to make the point that there is another King, and His name is Jesus. We can trust Him, so that we don’t need an earthly messiah.