By any reasonable standard, Donald Trump is in a brutal position. His average approval rating, as calculated by FiveThirtyEight, stands at 41.4 percent–the second-lowest on record for any first-term president at this stage in his presidency, and just percentage points ahead of Ronald Reagan. While Trump’s campaign team may make much of the fact that Reagan went on to a 49-state landslide in 1984, Reagan had far much more room for error at this stage than Trump has now.
But Trump is lucky to be doing even that well. The only reason he’s not below 30 percent is that the religious right is as firmly in his corner as ever. While most of the nation sees an almost daily barrage of outrages from this White House, the nation’s so-called moral guardians see Trump as nothing short of manna from heaven. After all, to hear them talk, he’s not just making America great again. He’s making America Christian again.
According to one of the most diehard of Trump’s diehard fundie supporters, there may be an explanation for why more people don’t see things their way. Wait for it–the church worship team.
During the 2016 campaign, retired firefighter Mark Taylor revealed that God had told him in 2011 that Trump would become president. But any competent reading of this “prophecy” shows that Taylor predicted Trump would unseat Barack Obama in 2012. As we know, that didn’t happen. Indeed, Trump ruled out a 2012 bid just a week after Taylor received this prophecy. Therefore, Taylor is a false prophet two times over.
But that hasn’t stopped Taylor from becoming one of the major players on the Trumpvangelical team. He has become one of the primary spokesmen in the religious right’s campaign to bully the nation, especially evangelicals, into bowing down to Trump. Among other things, Taylor claims that Trump is a prophet–and those who speak out against him are “touching God’s anointed.”
He has leveraged his newfound fame to become one of the biggest purveyors of conspiracy theory on the Internet. People for the American Way’s Right Wing Watch recently discovered one lovely example of this. Earlier this month, Taylor sat down with fringe Christian podcaster Rick Rene of the “Blessed to Teach” show, or “B2T,” as it’s popularly called. Taylor told Rene that the worship teams at their churches may be inadvertently keeping people from supporting and adoring Trump. Watch here.
Taylor warned the audience to stay away from the mainstream media, since if you do so, “you’re listening to Satan’s frequency.” What planet is this from, you ask? Well, back in July 2017, Taylor claimed to receive a “word” warning about the dangers of being “tuned into the enemy’s frequency,” and implied that the mainstream media operated on that frequency.
He doubled down on this line later that summer. He told fringe Christianist podcaster Sheila Zilinsky that the mainstream media is attached to a channel operated by “the devil himself,” and the Illuminati and Freemasons team up with the devil in order to use this channel to fiddle with our DNA and make us more receptive to their nefarious schemes. For that reason, Taylor argued that we need to stop listening to the media and get the facts “straight from the source”–Trump’s social media feeds.
Along the same lines, he told podcaster Sam Johnston that Christians who are speaking out against Trump are only doing so because their DNA has been corrupted from listening to “Satan’s frequency” for so long. As a result, they can’t see “how God is using Donald Trump to change America.”
Fast forward to earlier this month. Taylor claimed that a good chunk of worship music now operates on 440 kHz–the same frequency that the devil and his minions supposedly use to play with our DNA. He believes that whatever we’re “ushering in” if our music is set to that frequency, it’s not the Holy Spirit. When Rene asked if there was a way to fix this, Taylor replied that there are some worship bands that are tuning their music to a “better” frequency.
Well, that’s interesting. As many of you know, I am a charismatic Christian. I attend a church in Charlotte that is split almost down the middle between Democrats and Republicans. And yet, you can count the number of Trump supporters there on one hand. It’s particularly true among those 45 and younger. Among my friends there, the only people who voted for Trump did so while holding their noses.
So if you believe Taylor, the only reason my church isn’t full of MAGA hat wearers is because the worship team didn’t tune properly. Gee, I thought it was because we actually have standards. And I thought it was because those of us who look at Trump’s Twitter feed have seen that at bottom, Trump is still the same man caught boasting that he could “grab ’em by the pussy” just because he was a celebrity. But then again, Taylor is a conspiracy theory trafficker masquerading as a prophet, so he wouldn’t know real discernment if it hit him head-on.
Apparently it hasn’t occurred to Taylor that a good number of charismatic Christians know this country was swindled three years ago, and have been praying for the swindle to be exposed in full. And it’s not because we’re tuned to the devil’s frequency, or because the worship team isn’t tuned properly. It’s because we care about the future of our country.
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