Going to seminary has shown me that my faith and politics do not always align and, when that is the case, my politics need to conform to my faith. Sadly, in this day and age, too many people are conforming their faith to their politics. The comments section to this will look like that. And Franklin Graham looks like that.
In 1998, Franklin Graham took to the pages of the Wall Street Journal to write about Bill Clinton's adultery.
Last week Mr. Clinton told 70 million Americans that his adulterous actions with Ms. Lewinsky were a "private" matter "between me, the two people I love the most--my wife and our daughter--and our God."
But the God of the Bible says that what one does in private does matter. Mr. Clinton's months-long extramarital sexual behavior in the Oval Office now concerns him and the rest of the world, not just his immediate family. If he will lie to or mislead his wife and daughter, those with whom he is most intimate, what will prevent him from doing the same to the American public?
Private conduct does have public consequences. Some of Mr. Clinton's defenders present King David of the Bible, one of history's great leaders, as an example as they call on us to forgive and forget the president's moral failings. Since God pardoned David's adulterous act with Bathsheba, the reasoning goes, we should similarly forgive Mr. Clinton.
But forgiveness is not the end of David's story. Huge consequences followed immediately. The prophet Nathan confronted David with the news that while his life would be spared, the life of his child would be extinguished after just seven days on earth. Bathsheba's husband and others were killed in an attempt to cover up the illicit affair. David, who confessed his sin when confronted by Nathan (perhaps God's special prosecutor), also witnessed a bloody coup attempt by his own son, Absalom. He was never the same king.
I have written similarly of President Trump. And I have noted about King David much the same when people claim God loved David so we should be okay with Trump.
Franklin Graham, like many of those commenting here, has shallowed out his faith to suit his politics in the present age. And now, in an interview with the Associated Press, Graham says:
I don’t have concern, in a sense, because these things happened many years ago — and there’s such bigger problems in front of us as a nation that we need to be dealing with than other things in his life a long time ago. I think some of these things — that’s for him and his wife to deal with. I think when the country went after President Clinton, the Republicans, that was a great mistake that should never have happened. And I think this thing with Stormy Daniels and so forth is nobody’s business. And we’ve got other business at hand that we need to deal with.