These Evangelical Leaders Are Standing by Trump, but Rejecting Racism
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President Trump's business councils may be a casualty of his controversial comments following white supremacist violence in Charlottesville over the weekend, but most of his evangelical advisers say they aren't going anywhere.
"I believe it would be the immoral thing to take the stewardship of influence that's been given to us and withdraw from it under the pressure of people who oppose the president and will oppose the president whatever he does," Johnnie Moore, a former senior vice president at Liberty University and also one of the President's evangelical advisers, told Premier Radio in the UK.
"It's our responsibility to give advice, give counsel when we're asked and it's the administration's responsibility whether they take it," Moore continued.
Not all of the president's evangelical advisers have stuck with him though. Megachurch Pastor A.R. Bernard has pulled out. More on that here.
But in a statement to ABC News, Moore said, "...we appreciate the deep relationship we have with the administration and the listening ear they have given to us and continue to give to us. We take this seriously, and we feel no responsibility to convey publicly the clear advice we've given them, privately. We will continue to do so. It's their responsibility to do with it what they will. It's our responsibility to fulfill our spiritual and national duty."
Dr. Darrell Scott, pastor of New Spirit Revival Center in Cleveland, OH, is firing back at the critics, tweeting: "Those CEO's didn't jump ship on the POTUS because of any "Moral High Ground". The(y) jumped ship to protect their brand and their profits!"
Their support for the president did not keep the faith leaders from speaking out against Saturday's violence in Charlottesville.
"White supremacism, racism, and anti-Semitism are bigotry and they are pure evil. I hate them, and I call upon all Americans to defy them with intentional acts of solidarity and love," said Moore.
Samuel Rodriguez of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, and who took part in Trump's inauguration,criticized those who were trying to use the events of last weekend for their own political gain.
"Unless, we bridge this senseless and partisan divide there will be more horrors to come. It's on each of us to be a part of solution and it begins with turning our political swords into plowshares. We must begin to work together to heal our nation," said Rodriguez.
Ronnie Floyd, senior pastor of Cross Church in northwest Arkansas and a former president of the Southern Baptist Convention, said the actions of the white supremacists do not represent any form of the Christian faith or values.
"In fact, white nationalism and white supremacism are anathema to the teachings of Christ, who called us to love and to serve our neighbor — regardless of skin color, gender or religion — to give up our life for our friends and to even love our enemies," Floyd said.
Moore told Premiere that when it comes down to it, now is not a time that he or any of his fellow religious leaders are focusing on politics.
"This is a moment for the church to be the church and even those who are in a position of advising the White House - that's what we're doing."
"We spend far more time praying for people," said Moore.
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