Recently, Dr. Robert Jeffress, pastor of First Baptist Church in Dallas, and one of the most ardent evangelical defenders of President-elect Donald Trump during the election campaign, said something that is making just about everyone's jaw drop.
During an interview with the local Good Morning Dallas television program, the megachurch pastor told the interviewer, "[O]ur beliefs are not based on the shifting sands of culture, but on the eternal, unchangeable truth of God's Word." Then, he immediately said same-sex "marriage" is the "law of the land."
"This is not going to be re-litigated by the Supreme Court," he said. "That is the law of the land, and I wish it were different, but it's not different, and actually I had to argue against some hard-right Catholics and evangelicals who wanted Mr. Trump to make that a campaign issue. I said, 'Guys, forget it. It's over. We need to go on to other things like protecting the unborn.'"
Actually, Trump repeatedly made the claim that his Supreme Court picks would take up and defend biblical marriage. It's also a key component of the Republican Party's platform.
Jeffress doesn't hold any official title with the Trump administration and is playing no role in the Presidential Transition Team, so his comments don't carry tremendous weight. But, for evangelicals who were skeptical, or even opposed to the president-elect's campaign, they signal a potentially disastrous betrayal even before Inauguration Day.
They also signal perhaps some misunderstanding on the part of Jeffress as to how American self-governance works. Either way, some prayers for the president-elect, for those around him, and for Jeffress are definitely in order.
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