It would be charitable to call the white religious right’s continuous attacks on Rev. Raphael Warnock, beginning from the moment he launched his successful bid to become the first Black U.S. senator from Georgia, merely un-Christian.
Most recently, Georgia Baptist minister and Donald Trump loyalist Doug Collins, who once claimed Warnock’s stance as a “pro-choice pastor” is an oxymoronic “lie from the bed of hell,” blamed the senator’s condemnation of Georgia’s new voting restrictions—but not the racist law itself—for MLB’s decision to relocate its All-Star Game from the state, crying that “woke” Warnock “spread lies” about the legislation. Just a week ago, a now-deleted tweet from Warnock’s account—which stated that the “meaning of Easter is more transcendent than the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Whether you are Christian or not, through a commitment to helping others we are able to save ourselves”—so enraged very-online white evangelicals that they spent the holiest day in the Christian calendar casting judgment, labeling Warnock a “heretic,” a “narcissistic heretic,” and an “actual heretic.” Leading the charge was Jenna Ellis, an attorney for Trump’s failed coup d’état and proponent of the racist Kamala Harris birther lie. Beyond branding Warnock a “heretic,” Ellis voiced the real ideological truth underlying the attacks on the Georgia senator.
“He should delete Reverend in front of his name,” Ellis tweeted about Warnock, a doctoral graduate of Columbia University’s theological seminary. “People who don’t know Jesus pretend he was a soft-spoken philanthropist… If Warnock’s church were truly biblical and Christian, he would not be a pastor. His theology and practice is inconsistent with the Bible.” She was backed up by gun enthusiast and Christian podcaster Allie Beth Stuckey, who compared the senator’s faith to a kind of “social justice moralism” in which “Jesus is not a savior but a ‘liberator’—and not from sin, but from “systems”… Jesus/Christianity is a means to their political and social activist ends, which they like to categorize as ‘helping others’ (what they typically mean is government programs).”