King David is back! He’s been dead for thousands of years, but now he’s out there on the campaign trail, stumping for Donald Trump.
Oh, it’s not his choice. Who in his right mind would trade heavenly bliss for a role in this year’s mudslinging presidential campaign? But when you’re dead you don’t really have a choice. People can use your name for whatever purposes they dream up. And Trump’s people have put the king to work on their candidate’s behalf.
The spiel goes something like this:
Yes, we know Trump is irreverent and foul-mouthed and disrespectful and a little loony at times, but have you forgotten that David committed adultery with Bathsheba and had her husband killed? How can you criticize Trump when one of your own spiritual heroes did things that were far worse? You’re being hypocritical! Shame on you!
I’ve now read some form of the above paragraph on at least 4 blogs and a half-dozen Facebook posts. I marvel at the irrationality of such logic.
Sure, King David messed up. Big time. No one would argue with that. But God made it clear that David was a man after his own heart. (Acts 13:22) I don’t know anyone who would make such a claim about Trump. Not even his most ardent supporters, who all must have cringed when he spoke of “Two Corinthians” at Liberty University.
How can you compare a guy who wrote parts of the Bible with a guy who doesn’t even know how to say the names of the books? It seems absurd, yet people are doing it with a straight face.
Paul said that there is a type of person whose mind is governed by the flesh and another type whose mind is governed by the Spirit. (Romans 8:6) The person whose mind is governed by the Spirit will still sin, of course. But his sin will be occasional, the result of weakness, rather than frequent, the result of worldly affection.
And when sin occurs, the person whose mind is governed by the Spirit will repent.
Granted, David needed a nudge from the prophet Nathan after his scandalous dealings with Bathsheba. But I don’t know anybody who believes David’s repentance wasn’t total and sincere. Psalm 51 is the gold standard when it comes to Bible passages that show the true meaning of repentance. Trump, on the other hand, is unable to say that he’s ever asked God for forgiveness.
If you’re a Trump supporter, fine. Campaign for him all you want. Vote for him if you choose. But please, don’t use King David to try to make your candidate’s evangelical-minded critics feel like hypocrites.
As they say, that dog just won’t hunt.