Trump’s 'abysmal' handling of Jan. 6 'deeply' wounded the conservative Christian movement: author

A new book by author and radio host Michael Brown looks at whether Christians who support former President Donald Trump have undermined their own faith, The Christian Post reports.

Brown says that even though he's voted for Trump, Christians should put God first when it comes to politics.

"I do believe Christians should be involved in politics and should have a positive impact on politics, but somehow, especially in the last election cycle, we became obsessed with politics," Brown told The Christian Post. "We became more concerned with winning the election than winning the lost."

Brown added that when Christians merge the Gospel with elections it's "as if a political party was the key to advancing God's Kingdom on the earth."

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In his book, "The Political Seduction of the Church: How Millions of American Christians Have Confused Politics with the Gospel," Brown aims to reject "the exaggerated, caricatured claims of the left, in which Trump supporters were branded white supremacists and insurrectionists," while spelling out "the dangers of Christian nationalism" and rejecting "the idea that the Church is called to take over society."

Speaking to The Christian Post, Brown said Trump's handling of his rally on January 6 was "abysmal."

"The rhetoric leading up to it was dangerous," said Brown. "It gave the Left all the ammunition they needed to make all of us who voted for Trump into 'white supremacist insurrectionists.'"

"This hurts our cause deeply, and it was part of the downside of the president," Brown stressed. "He was irresponsible in his actions on that day."

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Trump benefited from the fierce support of evangelicals in 2016 and cannot afford to lose those voters if he wants to win a second term in November.

Team Trump was a bit frayed in 2019 when evangelical magazine Christianity Today published a scathing editorial before Christmas in favor of the president's removal from office.

"The facts in this instance are unambiguous: The president of the United States attempted to use his political power to coerce a foreign leader to harass and discredit one of the president's political opponents," wrote the magazine's editor-in-chief, Mark Galli.

"That is not only a violation of the Constitution; more importantly, it is profoundly immoral."

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Of course, Trump quickly fired back -- with a series of tweets.

"The fact is, no President has ever done what I have done for Evangelicals, or religion itself!" he said, calling Christianity Today a "far left" publication.

Several top figures in the religious movement lined up to support Trump.

Franklin Graham -- one of the sons of the celebrated late pastor Billy Graham, who popularized televangelism in the 1950s and founded Christianity Today -- lent his support.

Graham said his father "would be very disappointed" with the magazine's editorial, adding: "My father knew Donald Trump, he believed in Donald Trump, and he voted for Donald Trump."

Tony Perkins, president of the ultra-conservative Family Research Council, said the editorial represented an "isolated voice" and added he was not at all worried that it would drain evangelical support away from Trump.

"I see the support just as strong now as it was in 2016, if not stronger," Perkins said in an interview.

One of every four Americans identifies as evangelical, according to the Pew Research Center, a Washington-based think tank.

Evangelicalism is the primary form of Protestantism in America, and the main religious group in the country, ahead of Catholics (21 percent) and traditional Protestants.

With additional reporting by AFP