A.R. Bernard is the first of Donald Trump’s Evangelical Advisory Board to jump ship. Here is his statement via Twitter and Facebook:

A reporter on religion, Sara Pulliam Baily via The Washington Post tells us more.

Most of President Trump’s evangelical advisers have stood by him this week following much criticism over his response to violent clashes in Charlottesville, even as several CEOs left business advisory councils and members of his Committee on the Arts and Humanities have announced they are leaving the panel.

In a first for his evangelical advisory council, New York City megachurch pastor A.R. Bernard announced Friday that he had stepped down from the unofficial board of evangelical advisers to Trump. Bernard sat at the president’s table on May 3, the night before the National Day of Prayer when Trump gathered several religious leaders to announce an executive order on religious freedom.

Bernard’s Brooklyn-based Christian Cultural Center, which claims 37,000 in membership, has been described by the New York Times as the largest evangelical church in New York City. He said he submitted a formal letter on Tuesday, the same day Trump made controversial remarks about the events that took place in Charlottesville.

It would have been far more admirable if A.R. Bernard and other so-called Christians leaders had never allowed themselves to be any part of a man whose words and actions during his presidential campaign and presidency have exemplified everything Jesus was against. Trump has proven time and time again to be:

·      A liar

·      A fake news propagandist

·      A bully

·      A scammer

·      A sexual predator

·      A warmonger

·      A fear monger

·      A tax-evader

·      A racist

·      A homophobe/anti-LGBTQ+

·      A xenophobe/anti-Muslim

·      A hater and provocateur of hate

·      A greedy, self-serving opportunist

·      An exploiter of the American people for profit

·      A climate denier

·      A revenge seeker

·      An ego-driven narcissist  

·      A bombastic cold sore and immature conveyer of all of the above—via Twitter

So to A.R. Bernard: Most of us would loved to have seen you and other pastors ditch the pseudo-Christian path to hell via Trump much sooner, but we’ll take this and hope others will quickly follow.

On the other side of this coin, and more in line with the words of Jesus, there are a good number of Christian pastors who have not only rejected Trump from the start, but who have also harshly and unabashedly spoken out against Trump. One of those leaders is John Pavlovitz of North Carolina. He lives in one of the deepest Red states located in the Deep South, so the pushback has been fierce. It’s leaders like Pavlovitz who are more deserving of admiration, fortitude and courage. You can read more about him below or visit his website at John Pavlovitz.com. He’s also on Facebook and Twitter (@JohnPavlovitz).