Are evangelical leaders “selling themselves” to President Donald Trump?
That’s the claim some critics have made in the wake of a presidential election in which evangelicals widely showed up to support Trump at the polls — and, more specifically, after a photo emerged earlier this month showing numerous Christian leaders laying hands on and praying for the president.
But Ronnie Floyd, former president of the Southern Baptist Convention, believes critics have it all wrong.
“The gospel is not being compromised. I believe firmly in the gospel,” Floyd told The Christian Post. “I never one time compromised the gospel of Jesus Christ. I built a church on that gospel. So, nobody is compromising anything.”
— Johnnie Moore ن (@JohnnieM) July 12, 2017
Speaking more specifically about the prayer photo that has made waves in recent days, Floyd said that the men and women in the room with Trump believe the “Bible is the word of God” and that they would never compromise that; he said that they merely seek to spread light in a world of dark.
“I believe all of those leaders that I know in that room, I don’t know all of them, but of the ones that I know pretty well, that’s their very strong commitment,” Floyd told The Christian Post. “They are going to do what is right. They are not for sale. They are there to serve and they are there to pray and they are there to help when called upon to do so.”
Floyd was hardly the first participant to speak out after the prayer photo sparked controversy, with some critics like the Rev. William Barber, head of North Carolina’s state branch of the NAACP, saying that the photo was an example of “theological malpractice that borders on heresy.”
As Faithwire previously reported, Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, a conservative organization, specifically took aim at Barber’s claims.
In an op-ed published by The Christian Post, Perkins said that he observed some Christians who “pitched a fit” when the prayer photo went viral, expressing his belief that, despite their differences, the religious right and the religious left shouldn’t disagree over the importance of prayer.
“Obviously, Barber wasn’t nearly as upset about the prayer as he was about evangelicals’ access to the president they helped elect,” he wrote. “Had a photo surfaced of Christians praying over Barack Obama, I guarantee the reverend’s response would have been far different.”