In an account reported in 1933, Dietrich Bonhoeffer was making a radio address to the German nation when he was abruptly cut off. He had mentioned that any leader seeking to be idolized would become a misleader.
He had offended Adolph Hitler, so, at the age of 27, Bonhoeffer was now considered an enemy of the state. He had watched as his homeland was transformed into something he could hardly appreciate: Der Fuhrer and his plans were the new reality.
The German church was also changing; all of a sudden it was the Reich Church. Bonhoeffer and fellow pastors met this with the Confessing Church. It would be a church of resistance and would preach the whole counsel of God.
The people of Germany would be forced to make a choice, and many would choose to go along to get along. They wouldn’t necessarily become Nazis, but more likely “good Germans.” The mass rallies in Berlin had persuaded many that they were a part of something important.
Apparently, Donald Trump’s campaign-style rallies do the same thing for his minions. Among that number are many Evangelical Christians. They voted Trump for president with 81 percent of their number, and by and large, continue that support.
Even though he seems averse to democratic values and Christian conduct, they may feel that they are being patriotic as well as faithful.
New York Times columnist David Brooks put it this way in a recent op-ed piece, “Christians had a humane model for servanthood, but feeling besieged, they swapped it for Donald Trump, for gladiator pagan leadership.”
Richard J. Yost
South Abington Township