Well-known pastor and Christian author John Piper received a range of responses after he published a “long-overdue” op-ed explaining why he won’t vote for either Democratic nominee Joe Biden or President Trump on Nov. 3.
Evangelist Franklin Graham is among Piper's critics, saying he disagreed with his reasoning and pointed to a response in the Christian Post by former Planned Parenthood employee Abby Johnson, who spoke at the RNC.
"He is wrong on this issue," the son of the Rev. Billy Graham wrote on Twitter.
Piper, the “Desiring God” founder and pastor emeritus of Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis, isn't making a third-party endorsement like Kanye West nor does he “dictate how anyone else should vote,” but he does take clear shots at Trump, saying the last five years "bear vivid witness" to the "nation-corrupting" infection of "flagrant boastfulness, vulgarity, immorality and factiousness" spreading to every level of society."
Piper wrote he is “baffled” over the fact that many Christians consider the sins of unrepentant sexual immorality, boastfulness, vulgarity, factiousness, and the like, to be “only toxic for our nation,” while policies that endorse “baby-killing, sex-switching, freedom-limiting, and socialistic overreach are viewed as deadly.”
He cautioned that when a leader models “self-absorbed, self-exalting boastfulness, he models the most deadly behavior in the world” and “points his nation to destruction. Destruction of more kinds than we can imagine.”
Piper said the “church is paying dearly” for communicating “a falsehood to unbelievers (who are also baffled!) when we act as if policies and laws that protect life and freedom are more precious than being a certain kind of person” year after year.
Piper claimed his calling to lead people to Christ “is contradicted by supporting either pathway to cultural corruption and eternal ruin.”
Johnson, the former Planned Parenthood employee, called Piper’s comments “ridiculous.”
“Pride doesn’t kill babies. Boastfulness doesn’t tear them apart in their mothers’ wombs. Arrogance doesn’t cause a baby to flee for their lives as sharp instruments seek to rip them limb from limb while they are still alive. No. Abortion does that and abortion alone,” she wrote.
“We can’t legislate pride or boastfulness or arrogance. But we can legislate abortion,” Johnson added. “In fact, we can make it illegal. And that is what is on the line. Life is on the line. The innocent lives of precious babies are on the line. Not pride. Not arrogance.”
Christians Against Trumpism, a campaign started by former 2016 independent presidential candidate Evan McMullin's group Stand Up Republic, used Piper's name on its website, running anti-Trump ads.
"I did not sign and would not sign 'Christians Against Trumpism & Political Extremism.' My name is being used without my permission. I do not endorse any of the organizations listed here," Piper tweeted Friday.
On the website, one group listed is Pro-Life Evangelicals for Biden.