Benjamin L. Corey

Benjamin L. Corey

BLC is an author, speaker, scholar, and global traveler, who holds graduate degrees in Theology & Intercultural Studies from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary, and received his doctorate in Intercultural Studies from Fuller. He is the author of Undiluted: Rediscovering the Radical Message of Jesus, and Unafraid: Moving Beyond Fear-Based Faith.

Dear Evangelicals: Is Trump Still “Pro-Life” If He Gets Us All Killed?

When a variety of evangelical arguments failed to morally justify support for Donald Trump in the past presidential election, their argument ultimately boiled down to this:

“But, but, but… he’s pro-life.”

On one hand, I get the argument. The question of “Who will best preserve and uphold life?” is a critical question to me. And while I have never for a second viewed Donald Trump as being anywhere near what I would call “pro-life”, evangelicals seem to be pretty happy– and totally confirmed in their belief that he is exactly that.

Which, of course, leads me to my next question:

Will you still hold to your claim that Donald Trump is pro-life if he gets all of us killed?

Okay, so maybe he won’t get all of us killed, but it’s not an exaggeration to say that he’s well down the road of getting millions of innocent people killed– and if being “pro-life” is actually a value we hold, the “who” part of that equation shouldn’t be all that relevant.

(Unless, of course, you view the sanctity of life one way when it’s the unborn in America, and view it a different way when it’s the post-born in Korea, which actually might be the case.)

I get it– all presidents wage war, or consider waging it. War comes with the position, and isn’t something that changes all that much from one party to the next. I’ve seen both Democrat (Obama) and Republican (GW Bush) presidents be ruthless and bloodthirsty when it comes to firing at whoever the enemy of the day is.

However, even the most bloodthirsty, war-loving presidents, have at least expressed that waging war is a serious, sobering action. And certainly none of them have made light of nuclear war– something that could potentially kill millions in a flash, and ignite violent chaos across the world.

None of them have made light of it until, well… you-know-who.

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On one hand, it’s easy to roll one’s eyes and dismiss yet another tweet that is beyond anything we would have fathomed coming from the presidency– the daily WTF moments have been so many that we can easily be desensitized to the point we overlook things that never before would have been overlooked. And yes, I think we all know that as unstable as Trump seems to be, the idea he’d randomly launch a nuclear war is still something that seems far outside of expected reality.

However, we don’t know that about the leadership of North Korea.

Do we know how restrained they are committed to being?

Do we know how literally taunting them into a nuclear war is being received on their end?

Oh, and I’m not even going to bother asking if Trump understands how shame and honor cultures work, and how publicly dishonoring and mocking their leader is probably more than what will be laughed off as a silly tweet.

If war broke out on the Korean peninsula the death toll would be astronomical– especially if a nuclear warhead were detonated in that conflict. Even without nuclear bombs, war would trigger global conflict and a humanitarian crisis that would potentially be far beyond anything we’ve witnessed since World War II. This is precisely why the situation in Korea has been attempted to be handled delicately by every president of every party for the last generation– everyone on all sides seems to know that war in Korea would be the worst possible outcome, for everyone.

So, back to my original question: Is Trump still pro-life if he gets millions of people killed and triggers a global humanitarian crisis? And what if he did that, not through a rigorous process of foreign policy, diplomacy, and reluctant entrance into war at the end, but simply because he had unsupervised access to his iPhone one night before his bedtime?

Would all that *really* be worth a seat on the Supreme Court?

And I guess pondering all that leaves me with another question for all of my fellow Christians out there on the internet:

If Jesus said, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God”, what do we call someone who is intentionally taunting and goading another world leader into what would potentially be the deadliest war in history?

Benjamin L. Corey

Benjamin L. Corey

BLC is an author, speaker, scholar, and global traveler, who holds graduate degrees in Theology & Intercultural Studies from Gordon-Conwell, and earned his doctorate in Intercultural Studies from Fuller.

He is the author of Unafraid: Moving Beyond Fear-Based Faith, and Undiluted: Rediscovering the Radical Message of Jesus.

It's not the end of the world, but it's pretty #@&% close. Trump's America & Franklin Graham's Christianity must be resisted.

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It's not the end of the world, but it's pretty #@&% close. Trump's America & Franklin Graham's Christianity must be resisted.

Join the resistance: Subscribe for posts and updates from BLC!

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  • So what did we get out of the Korean talks…..

    “”All our weapons, including atomic bombs, hydrogen bombs and ballistic missiles, are only aimed at the United States, not our brethren, nor China and Russia,” Pyongyang’s chief negotiator, Ri Son Gwon, said.

    I hope that makes my American friends feel better.

    Yay, Trump…….

    Oh and North Korea gets to send their cheerleaders to the Olympics….

    Win/win for North Korea…..while South Korea doesn’t get any missile tests heading their way while they host the games.

  • Im assuming Trump actually said he was ‘pro-life’ in the context of abortion, though I seem to have forgotten that in all the nonsense he has spoken. Re NK, its just political rhetoric. Im against nuclear weapons because of their indiscriminate nature, but if NK became a nuclear ‘clear and present danger’, not just to the US but to numerous countries around the world involving millions of people, should those countries’ governments not take appropriate, non-nuclear action against such a government? Thankfully the Allies were prepared to fight against the evil of Nazism.

    I also find your argument rather disingenuous. I agree he should not be talking about using nuclear weapon against anyone, but as I said that is rhetoric, though it should be noted the US is the only country in the world to have used such weapons against others. Ive always found it rather hypocritical of the US in complaining about other nations developing them. You cant have any but we’re keeping ours! But is he and other nation leaders not simply trying to protect the people he is responsible for?

    As for abortion, Im assuming you are ‘liberal’ when it comes to that issue – correct me if Im wrong. In the UK around 186,000 abortions were carried out in England and Wales alone in 2015, with about 9 out 10 abortions carried out up to 12 weeks pregnancy.

    See https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pregnancy-weeks-9-10-11-12/?

    However, abortion is allowed up to 24 weeks and about 1 in 50 were carried out after 20 weeks pregnancy, thats 3,700.

    See https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pregnancy-weeks-21-22-23-24/?#your-body-at-21-24-weeks-pregnant

    Are you still convinced of your ‘liberal’ stance?

  • Don’t be so confused, Benjamin.
    Trump’s pro-life stance is authoritarian. It is aimed at limiting the decision making powers of pregnant women and their doctors.
    Trump’s bellicose stance regarding North Korea is authoritarian. “You will do what I tell you because I have more bombs.”

    Trump’s valuation of human life is not much.
    He is too busy valuing himself and his power, fame and money.

  • I don’t think this is Corey at his best but, to be fair, the evangelical community has rallied round Trump because he furthers their cause and they are generally pro-life. What it really boils down to is the fatallistic theology that welcomes the ‘end-times’ hastening Christ’s return. In a scenario where the premier world leader is inches away from the red button many evangelicals are drooling like bloodhounds.

    This is scarily reminiscent of 1935 Germany where the predominent church strand is omminously aligned with the state and a leader has emerged who will happily pander to the religious right for his own ends. Of course Trump is about as intelligent as a bumper sticker and expendable now he’s got his donors their tax cuts. Trump is dumb enough to start a nuclear war but his exit won’t automatically stop the USA descent into the abyss taking religious lemmings with it.

  • Corey is upset about us taunting North Korean wingnut, Rocket Man. That’s real insightful! Wow, hold me back. Meanwhile the wingnut North Korean country has been taunting us for decades. Corey has shown, I think, what the pacifist mind is like – no courage, but often misuse Scripture. To be a peacemaker means to be making peace, namely between two people, not nations. Rocket Man is not looking for peace, but Pres T is, through strength and courage. Pres T has courage, with Major Mathis there will also be strength. Corey, even with your military background you may speak with experience, but not with wisdom or insight, not this time.

  • While Trump may not be “presidential,” he is effective. North Korea has been pounding its chest for decades in a deliberate attempt to gain traction in its pursuit of nuclear weapons. The passive approach was what NK has always counted on. Now, finally, a president uses savage language back and North Korea backs off. Notice that right after Trump’s “I’ve got a bigger button” Tweet, Kim Jong Un stated he wasn’t trying to start a war and resumed talks with South Korea. The only language animals like Jong Un understand is force. That’s the world we live in. One would have thought leftists like Mr. Corey would get that after watching appeasement fail over and over again. Some people never learn.

  • Who is Mr. Corey quoting when he says that Evangelicals say that President Trump is “pro-life?” I’ve never heard anyone say Trump is personally pro-life. I heard some Evangelicals argue in favor of Trump over Ms. Clinton saying he would do more for the pro-life cause than Clinton would or that he’d appoint pro-life judges. But I haven’t heard anyone actually say that Mr. Trump, himself, is pro-life. I find that Mr. Corey does this frequently. He creates a quote, attributes it to “evangelicals,” and then attempts to rebut it. There are various flaws in this method of argumentation. The first being that not all evangelicals think the same thing. The second is that the position or quote he attributes to evangelicals is often not even what particular evangelicals are saying.

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