January 17, 2021
Memo to Dr. Brown - The Christian Insurrectionists Are Your Legacy
By Anthony Wade
Dr. Michael Brown is once again trying to pretend he had nothing to do with the carnage he is responsible for...
For we aim at what is honorable not only in the Lord's sight but also in the sight of man. - 2Corinthians 8:21 (ESV)
The key verse today cannot be plainer. We are to strive to not only do what is right in the eyes of the Lord but also in the sight of man. Truth be told however, many in church leadership have not been doing either when it comes to politics. They never have. They have sold out Christ and His church for craven, carnal politics. They have wrapped Jesus in an American flag and taught nationalism at Sunday School for decades. While this has always been abhorrent to God and man it was really placed on steroids when Donald Trump was elected. As we entered the 2020 election season the church had already declared they were all in for Trump. All of the false prophets lined up to take their 50-50 shot that Trump would be reelected and all have been proven false as a result. This would have been damaging enough for the witness for Christ but the behavior of Christian leadership since the election has been far worse. They have hopped aboard the deranged train that sells the lies of election fraud that never occurred. This train derailed last week in Washington DC when Christians and white nationalists joined together to commit treason and insurrection at the Capitol. In the aftermath, many of the same leaders are now pretending they had nothing to do with how we got here. One such man is Dr. Michael Brown, who has carried the President's water for four years now. In his latest article linked above, he tries to dismiss the clear facts that Christians were among the revolt that has resulted in five deaths so far, including one police officer. Let us reason together once more to discover that not only is Dr. Brown wrong, but he is in fact culpable.
"In an important, probing article, David French claimed, "A violent Christian insurrection invaded and occupied the Capitol" (his emphasis). Is there truth to this serious charge? He wrote, "Why do I say this was a Christian insurrection? Because so very many of the protesters told us they were Christian, as loudly and clearly as they could." He notes that there "was a giant wooden cross outside the Capitol" and adds that "'Jesus saves' signs and other Christian signs were sprinkled through the crowd. I watched a man carry a Christian flag into an evacuated legislative chamber." One of his colleagues pointed out "that Christian music was blaring from the loudspeakers late in the afternoon of the takeover. And don't forget," he wrote, "this attack occurred days after the so-called Jericho March, an event explicitly filled with Christian-nationalist rhetoric so unhinged that I warned on December 13 that it embodied 'a form of fanaticism that can lead to deadly violence.'" French also points to some of the lies that helped fuel the fires of the storming of the Capitol, including: "America will end if Trump loses"; and, "The fate of the church is at stake if Joe Biden wins. A Misleading Article. Yet, as much as I agree with many of the concerns French raises, the article still paints a misleading picture. The fact that Christian music was playing at the big rally does not mean that the violent attackers were Christians themselves -- not, at least, in any true sense of the word. I believe that this will be confirmed in the days to come, as virtually all of those arrested will be identified as members of white supremacist, white nationalist-type groups. To say nothing of leftist agitators. Not all, but virtually all. The reason I say this is precisely because I share many of the concerns raised by French in terms of some very real problems in the evangelical church today, especially in our white evangelical circles. As my readers know all too well (for some of them, to the point of ad nauseam), I, too, have raised concerns about Christians looking to Trump as some kind of political messiah. I have raised concerns about an unhealthy Christian nationalism and about confusing America with the kingdom of God. And, in the immediate aftermath of the Jericho March, I drew attention to the dangerous military rhetoric that at least one speaker used in the rally. Not to mention the theological errors that colored much of the rally itself." - Dr. Michael Brown
This is the problem Dr. Brown. You continue to play both sides of every argument. You always did this when it came to exposing error in the church. For example, you wrote a book about the errors of greasy grace but then refused to call out Joseph Prince, the king of greasy grace. You write against the abuses within Charismania but still refer to Benny Hinn as your brother in Christ. This fence sitting is exactly what you do with your dominionism and NAR gatekeeper status. Yes, you have occasionally written articles warning about Trump idolization but they are surrounded by other articles furthering the insanely dangerous lie that there was fraud in this past election. Now you are an intelligent man Dr. Brown so I find it difficult to believe that you honestly believe there was fraud to the level that a seven million vote margin would be changed. I can believe you wanted it to be believable. I can see that you probably prayed for it. But in your heart you must know that this is one of the worst manipulations of truth in your lifetime. 62 lawsuits were dismissed or laughed out of court - many by Republican judges. They only clamor of fraud you hear comes from the loser of the election. That does not mean that there is somehow widespread shared belief in that false fraud accusation. Even within this opening paragraph we see the double speak. You state problems in the church. You speak against unhealthy nationalism. Yet in the middle of trying to get on the right side, you insert the gem about leftist agitators. This of course is horse manure created by the Fox News hosts to try and split the bill after the carnage. There was no leftist agitators Dr. Brown and you damn well know it. Yet you throw it out there for the Trump lies to continue to gain traction and that is why you are so dangerous to the truth and the Gospel.
"I also hold President Trump responsible for years of dangerous rhetoric that helped fuel the fires of hatred and mistrust that exploded in our nation's Capitol. (For the record, I do not believe he should have been impeached once, let alone twice.). But as an evangelical leader who is good friends with quite a few prominent, evangelical Trump supporters, and as one who lives in the midst of the evangelical movement, I know for a fact that these leaders and believers were appalled and shocked at what took place that fateful day. Peace and Prayer " Until a Bus Arrived. One caller to my radio show told our listeners that he felt led by God to be at the event and to stand in front of the Capitol, starting at 9:00 AM. All that day, in the freezing cold, he held up a flag saying, "We need You Lord." And he said that, for hours, as the handful of people there turned into tens and then hundreds, then thousands, the atmosphere was peaceful and prayerful. It was only when a bus arrived at 12:30 p.m. with a new group of people that things shifted, as they began to challenge the police and call for an attack. He was convinced that they were Antifa plants, but let's say that they were actually white nationalist Trump supporters. Either way, the point is they were the ones who provoked the violence, not the thousands who were there to pray. (He was actually positioned at the very point where the fence was breached, so his perspective was invaluable.). Other friends of mine who were there were beyond mortified by the events of the day. Every Christian leader I know was appalled." - Dr. Michael Brown
This article by Dr. Brown was released a couple of days ago so he unfortunately had not yet seen the video released today by the New Yorker magazine from a reporter who was there on January 6, 2021. You see Dr. Brown was not there. Despite seeming to be certain about things such as believers being shocked and appalled, Brown has already been disproven by the video evidence. The New Yorker video shows the insurrectionists in the hallowed chamber as one of them leads them in a prayer to Jesus Christ thanking Him for allowing their rebellion to be successful. Thanking our Lord and Savior for delivering to them the traitors and treasonous. All the while the other criminals were raising their hands as if they were at an Evangelical church service. With absolutely no respect your radio caller, who is pre-biased towards you, I will rely on my own eyes and the bible, which assures me that God did not lead anyone to be at that insurgency.
So please, save your appalled nonsense. You do not get to now pretend that you had nothing to do with it. You fomented doubt in the election for the past two months. You riled up the Christian base to believe they were robbed of another four years with their idol at the helm. Sure, maybe not as blatantly as Steven Strang but your rhetoric was more dangerous because of tis subtlety. You are still doing it now in this article! Do you honestly think this was a just an informal Gaither Family concert until this mysterious bus showed up filled with agitators? Then you float the ridiculous notion that the agitators were secret Antifa plants. You quickly back off of it but its too late because you already inserted it into the conversation. I watched from the inception and it was always an unruly mob which clearly sought trouble and found it. There were no Antifa plants and the suggestion that there was is both insulting to my intelligence and odious to me as a believer. The fact is that many who attended were indeed Evangelical Christians who have obviously been taught very poorly by dominionists like you.
"This is not who we are. These are not the values to which we adhere. In that sense, this was not a Christian insurrection. Do I believe many of these same Christians have become caught up in a partisan political spirit? Absolutely. Do I believe they should have been grieved at the unwise remarks of Rudy Giuliani and Donald Trump, Jr. at the rally? Certainly. Do I believe that, for many, there was an unhealthy mingling of patriotism with the worship of Jesus? Without a doubt. Do I believe that many of these committed Christians had been misled by lies and exaggerations, including those of QAnon? Yes again. Do I believe that this should be a time of great soul searching for those evangelical Christians who tethered their hopes to a man? Once more, yes. That's why I say that I share many of the concerns French raised and why I encouraged some of my friends and colleagues to read his article. That's also why, as I mentioned in my most recent article, I have always respected Christian Never Trumpers (who sat out elections rather than voted Republican or Democrat), even if I did not join in their ranks." - Dr. Michael Brown
No Dr. Brown. This is who you are. These people are your creation. The remarks by the people you associate with were not just unwise. They were treasonous. Giuliani actually told the crowd to go to the Capitol and engage in "trial by combat." Do you honestly believe this was just an "unwise" statement or should in fact Mr. Giuliani go to jail for it? You claim that mixing Jesus worship with patriotism was unhealthy but it is you that have done so, consistently, since Donald Trump came to power. Sure you couch all of your articles to sound reasonable because you like the feel of the fence under you but your listeners knew damn well what you were teaching. You walked into the public square and set off a pipe bomb Dr. Brown. You do not now get to pretend that you were the sensible one the whole time.
'The Serious Jesus Followers. But once more, that's where I make the important distinction between the serious, Jesus followers who were in D.C. to pray for a righteous outcome to the election and those few who came ready to do battle. (For my relevant Twitter poll, see here. Over 79 percent of those polled did not know a single Christian who approved of the violent attack.) If you think I'm being too naïve (which, at times, I certainly can be), take a few minutes to research where the pre-rally, violent chatter came from online. Was it from solid evangelical sites, where the Word of God is honored and Jesus is preached? Or was it from right-wing extremist websites? The latter may profess to be Christian, but they have little to connect them to the Christian faith. As the Washington Post observed, "The planning for Wednesday's assault on the U.S. Capitol happened largely in plain view, with chatters in far-right forums explicitly discussing how to storm the building, handcuff lawmakers with zip ties and disrupt the certification of Joe Biden's election -- in what they portrayed as responding to orders from President Trump."' - Dr. Michael Brown
And those very people stopped in the chamber to pray thanksgiving to Jesus Dr. Brown. You are not naïve at all. The problem is you play as if you are. There were 79% who did not approve of the violence? What do you expect they are going to say to a poll! You still do not get it. Why should any clear-thinking Christian feel compelled to go to Washington DC on the day they were confirming the electors? To pray? Nonsense. They could pray just as effectively from home or at their local church, as inappropriate as that would have been. Why would they need to pray for a righteous election outcome when we have had one for two months already! When the Trump administration had already declared this as the most secure election in our nation's history! When Trump appointed judges not only dismiss 62 lawsuits filed by Trump but do so mockingly because there was never any evidence presented, it is nothing short of delusional to think we "need a righteous outcome." Even if you try to distance Christians from those who sought to take prisoners or worse, you still act as if their mere presence that day is perfectly justifiable and it most certainly is not. They were there because Trump told them to be and because those who claim to be leaders in the church such as yourself betrayed them with this false fantasy that the election was stolen.
"I agree that this is certainly a time for housecleaning in our evangelical camp. And just as Trump has helped to expose the radicality of the left, the bias of the media, and the tyranny of Big Tech, he has also helped to expose the hypocrisy and compromise of the church. But that's why we must be circumspect in our diagnosis if we want to help address and correct these problems. Otherwise, if we paint with too broad a brush or speak in too general terms, many will say in response, "Sorry, but that does not apply to me." The fact is that you and I did not storm the Capitol on January 6th and engage in violent acts against the police while threatening the lives of our elected officials. In that regard, this was absolutely not a Christian insurrection." - Dr. Michael Brown
This is why you are so dangerous Doctor Brown. This is where you contribute to the false narratives and lies that have corrupted the minds of weaker men and women. You agree it is time for housekeeping in the evangelical camp but you do not lift a finger to do so and in fact you continue to actively work on the other side of the disinformation. How? Trump did not expose the radical left. That is creation of the false narrative. Neither did Trump expose your imaginary bias in the media. This is a tired old narrative that has been false for decades. Now, if there is some anti-Trump bias can you hardly blame people who he labeled "enemies of the state" and actively stirred violence against them? Thirdly, Trump did not expose any big tech hypocrisy. This silly argument stems from the fact that people who are conservative are censored or banned more frequently than liberals. Your assumption that it must be bias is asinine and childish. The reason why of course is that conservative lie more often!
It is interesting that you think he exposed compromise in the church because he actually did but not the way you probably think. Trump helped expose the rampant idolatry people in church leadership operate under. Now it may surprise you that I agree with your summation in the end. It is too easy and too broad to call the insurrection a Christian effort. I do not believe that was an organizing principle across tens of thousands of people. However, they were certainly there Doctor Brown. They were certainly a part of it despite the alleged biblical teaching they have received. They reveal the harsh truth that the American apostate church is so enamored with NAR dominionism that they think nothing of joining thousands of other people in murdering cops and overthrowing their government, in Jesus name of course. The insurrection may not have been Christian but the Christians were definitively a part of the insurrection. A lot of the blame for that is laid at the feet of those who claim leadership and teach them. It is laid at your feet sir.
Reverend Anthony Wade - January 17, 2021
Credentialed Minister of the Gospel for the Assemblies of God. Owner and founder of 828 ministries. Vice President for Goodwill Industries. Always remember that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.