The American Republican Party traditionally offered a viable alternative to the Democrat Party, promising lower taxes, less government, business friendly regulations, and a focus on individual liberty, accountability, and Christian principles. Democrats and Republicans could disagree on policy, but in the end, the two party system, although inefficient, tended to work much of the time. Both parties supported the American Empire with its hundreds of military bases around the world, massive defense budgets, and the abuse of other nations in America's pursuit of world domination. For decades, both parties offered reasonable platforms for voters to choose from, although both parties were beholden to monied interests. However, things changed dramatically when Ronald Reagan was elected with help of the so-called Moral Majority, culminating in President Trump. The world watched in horror as Trump's MAGA army of mostly white violent racists stormed the Capital Building on January 6, 2021, egged on by Trump's call to overturn the counting of the electoral votes in an attempt to keep him in power. We should all be thankful that he failed. And since America is the most powerful nation on earth, another Republican administration--with its obsessive climate change denial--is a danger to all life on this planet.
Trump has moved the Republican Party so far right it is off the charts. Although losing the election, he is still a political force to be reckoned with. Ambitious Republicans must travel to Trump's estate in Mara Lago to "kiss the ring", as it were, if they are to have any chance of political success. His so-called MAGA movement has become a dangerous fascist force, and a threat to democracy. The consensus of climate scientists tells us we have precious little time left to reverse course by reducing and finally eliminating fossil fuels. The GOP's ("Grand Old Party" - another name for Republican Party) denial of climate change, combined with its efforts to promote and deregulate fossil fuels, has made it a threat to the very survival of organized human society. GOP State legislators intend to enact, and in many cases have already passed, legislation that targets non-white voters, making it more difficult for them to vote. In Georgia, for example, it is now a crime to give someone a bottle of water who is waiting in line for many hours to cast their ballot. The GOP cannot now be considered a viable party in a democracy. It is a threat to democracy, and a threat to our survival.
How did the Republican Party become so dark and dangerous? Polls show that 80-90% of white evangelicals voted for Trump, a man who is antithetical to all that is Christian. How could this happen? We have to go back to Nixon and the "Southern Strategy". Nixon correctly determined that many Democrats in the South were not happy with all the civil rights legislation that was passed during that time. Many were racists and recoiled at the thought of all Americans being equal under the law. They wanted a predominantly white so-called Christian country, and feared demographic trends would render them a minority. They were wooed over to the Republicans, and through the use of political dog whistles and other devices, assured that if they voted for Nixon, white Americans would continue to dominate. It was successful and Nixon was elected twice. Then in the late 1970's the Moral Majority arose and firmly attached itself to the Republican Party. Churches and organizations, like the Southern Baptist Convention, were infiltrated with these ideologues and reasonable, impartial Christians pushed out. The result was the radicalization of white conservative Christianity into a racist, idolatrous, and violence-prone force that was only concerned with power. Other Christians were relegated to the fringes. With Trump, we see conservative white evangelical leaders prostrating themselves to him--falling over each other to gain his favor; telling their congregations, in violation of the Constitution, that they must vote Republican and vote for Trump.
Church history gives us a repeatable pattern: a church prostitutes itself to political power and becomes corrupted. It then goes on to persecute or sideline those that don't recognize its authority. An emperor is declared "God's chosen" or something similar, and goes on to rule by dictate and force. In the end, God intervenes and the false church and the authoritarian emperor, and sometimes his empire, is destroyed.
In the Christian era, we see the first example of this in the corrupt Jewish religious leadership of Jesus' time. Jesus had a growing following and was exposing the hypocrisy of the religious leadership. They felt threatened so decided to kill him--but they want Rome to do it because they feared the people. They pressure Pilate and drop a hint that Caesar would not be pleased if Pilate, who works for him, released someone calling himself King of the Jews and Son of God (one of Caesar's titles). Although Pilate clearly states that Jesus has not broken any laws, the religious leadership demands he be crucified and that Barabbas, a condemned seditionist and murderer, be released. They shout, "We have no king but Caesar." They have put themselves solidly on the side of Roman rule, in opposition to God's Kingdom. If they thought they had solved their problem and protected their positions, they were wrong. In the late 60's a Jewish rebellion against Rome brought the Roman armies to Jerusalem. In 70 CE, that city was destroyed, and the Temple burned to the ground, as Jesus had prophesied (see Matt 24, Luke 21, Mark 13). The Jewish historian Josephus estimates that 1.1 million people died, and thousands sold into slavery.
Christianity then moves out into the empire, where the Apostle Paul and his friends had founded many house churches across the northern and eastern Mediterranean and Asia Minor. The movement grows and spreads, and undergoes vicious persecution by both Jews and Roman elements. But in 313 CE, the new emperor, Constantine, makes a deal with Christians, ending persecution, returning their lands, and funding their building projects. However, they must recognize his authority over the church. Sadly, the church took the bait and was now beholden to a murderous Sun God worshiper who claimed to be Christian, but who was likely using the faith for political purposes. The church formed councils, which Constantine led, to declare which beliefs were "orthodox" and which were not. Those that held "unorthodox" beliefs were persecuted as heretics. Like the Jewish religious leaders, the church leaders of this time, became the persecutors and resistors of the faith left by Jesus and his teachings. And like Jerusalem in 70 CE, Rome was destroyed by northern tribes in 476 CE as punishment from God.
However, the Roman Catholic Church arose from the ashes of the old empire and gradually began exerting control over political powers in Europe. The Pope was declared to be Christ's unique representative and could, at times, remove Kings or Queens by excommunicating them. There were authentic Christians during this horrible period, like the Lollards, the Anabaptists, the Polish Brethren, and many others, but they generally were persecuted by the Roman church and, after the Reformation, by Protestant state churches. It was the norm now, that kings, queens, and popes were to be seen as the head of the church and could demand allegiance, on pain of persecution. King James I, for example, and his son Charles, ruled England and the church from 1603-1648. But times were changing. The English parliament and its laws was gaining power. Charles was arrested for treason, jailed in 1648 and executed in January of 1649, by the increasingly powerful English parliament. Later, during the French Revolution, France declared itself a Republic in 1792, and this spelled the end of Papacy's political power. Republics spread across Europe and monarchies fell. Democracies expanded and grew. It was the end of false Christian churches, beholden to an emperor, persecuting Christians who did not bow to their claimed authority.
Which brings us to today. The Republican Party along with the white evangelical church has become the false Christian harlot for the American emperor Donald Trump, or whoever might replace him in future elections. We saw Trump's disdain for democracy, and his many attempts to overturn the election he lost. He is a fascist, who has no regard for law or principle, and who wishes to rule by decree. He is an extremely dangerous individual because of his broad support in the Republican Party. General Flynn, who was one of the Trump Administration's senior advisors, recently declared that there should only be one religion in America, meaning the white evangelical church. The spirit of corrupt, abusive Church-State rule is alive and well today. And authentic Christians discern that behind the mask is the source: demonic power. Satan prefers corrupt Church-State rule. He can then persecute authentic Christians and make them either renounce Christ or torture and kill them. It is estimated that up to 50,000,000 people have been killed by the Roman Catholic and State Protestant churches over the centuries for 'heresy': that is, not bowing to the Church's claimed authority.
Where do we go from here? It should be obvious that voting Republican in the USA is a vote to end life as we know it on earth (short of divine intervention). It is the party of guns, lies, violence, racism, climate denial, pandemic and vaccine denial, fossil fuel expansion, and false Christianity. In the Republican Party we see the last gasps of a satanic system of Church-State union that will be destroyed permanently prior to the return of Christ. And yet the elite Democrat leadership, which receives significant corporate funding, is not much better if you subtract religion from the equation. Voters must demand that politicians declare support for climate action, universal healthcare, affordable housing, peacemaking, and winding down weapons manufacturing and fossil fuel companies, in order to secure their vote. However, prophecy indicates that humans are never going to bring about an ideal civilization. Unfortunately, things will likely continue to deteriorate until Christ returns, although we do expect a major uprising against corrupt politicians, false pastors, and corrupt business leaders in the near term, according to Joel's prophecy and Revelation 17 & 18. And so our relationship with God through Christ and the Spirit must be our top priority as we face one of the greatest tests of faith in history.