Miroslav Volf: “My God is Trump’s Devil”
Public theologian Miroslav Volf has responded to some of US President Donald Trump’s recent comments by suggesting that his understanding of God would be considered evil by Trump.
Dr Volf is an esteemed theologian and has previously served as an advisor to the White House Office of Faith-Based Partnerships. His 1996 book, Exclusion and Embrace was named by Christianity Today as one of the twentieth century’s most influential books. In 2014, he appeared on the ABC talk show Q&A.
In a wide-ranging post that appeared on both Facebook and Twitter, he argued that President Trump’s moral compass is based on egoism. To such a figure, he said, the idea of others sacrificing themselves for others are “losers and suckers”.
“People who embrace “what’s-in-it-for-me” as their rule of life and who, like Trump, can’t comprehend those who reject that principle, live in a different moral universe than I do,” Dr Volf wrote.
“Their god (the orienting centre of their lives) is my devil. My god is their devil.”
“What’s-in-it-for-me is the egoists’ principle. As Nietzsche noted, egoists think altruists are stupid for altruists often put even the advantage of egoists ahead of their own advantage. The prime example of such a “stupid sucker” was Jesus. He came to bear the sin of the world.”
“The Gospel of John states unambiguously that Jesus’ crucifixion was his glory. Of course, he shared glory with God before the world began and entered into glory after resurrection. God’s glory in eternity and in time is the matchless glory of unconditional, self-giving and love.”
“The only glory Trump recognizes that of victors who sacrifice nothing because they care for nothing except their own glory. That, and the hollow shimmer of gilded ceilings and the petty roar of a riled-up crowd. It is antithetical to the glory of the one true God.”
The comments came in response to comments the President allegedly made about fallen soldiers being “losers” and “suckers”. President Trump previously called Republican rival John McCain a “loser” and suggested that he likes soldiers “who weren’t captured.” Trump was not invited to Mr McCain’s funeral in 2018.
In a statement, White House spokesperson Alyssa Farah denied that the President ever made the alleged comments about “losers” and “suckers”, saying that he, “holds the military in the highest regard.”
“He’s demonstrated his commitment to them at every turn: delivering on his promise to give our troops a much-needed pay raise, increasing military spending, signing critical veterans reforms, and supporting military spouses,” Ms Farah said.
The US Presidential Election takes place on 4 November (Australia time).