The five or six Republican presidential candidates who bill themselves as more Christian than any of the others must be cussin’ today. Just when they most need to claim the crown of Best Christian for themselves, Donald Trump has all but stolen it.
Mega church preacher Paula White was on welfare when she was younger. Now her net worth is listed as five million dollars. She preaches in the genre of the “Prosperity Gospel”. This genre is also home to the hugely successful Joel Osteen among others.
The prosperity gospel’s message is usually characterized as “Jesus wants you to be successful” or “Jesus wants you to be rich.” By contrast, the message of traditional Christian candidates is “Jesus hates gays” and “Jesus hates abortion.”
When President Obama first ran for President, he criticized other Democrats for not wearing the Christianity on their sleeves like he did. He then learned his brand of Christianity did not measure up to the standards of some others. He left that church and has not joined another.
Times have changed. It appears a candidate can alien himself with the most hucksterish of Christian groups and get away with it. Maybe the public is not thinking of abortion and gay marriage as “sins” like it once did.
Perhaps Trump, after his meeting with White, will declare the reason he is so wealthy is because Jesus answered his prayers. This would be the ultimate victory for those in the prosperity camp and a bitter defeat of the conservative camp.
[An article about Donald Trump’s upcoming meeting with Paula White can be linked in comments.]