A group battling Christian nationalism has released a list of 20 “false prophets” it claims “routinely hijack faith for political purposes.”
The new effort by Faithful America doesn’t deal in generalisms but names names.
The list is published online at AmericanFalseProphets.org, along with bios and additional information about each person. The group includes politicians and pastors alike — most well-known figures.
The campaign’s name, “False Prophets Don’t Speak for Me,” is a reference to Matthew 7:15 — “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.”
“Christian nationalism is a grave threat to both American democracy and the church,” said Nathan Empsall, executive director of Faithful America. “Christian nationalist leaders come to us in sheep’s clothing, claiming to speak for Christ, but prove themselves to be ravenous wolves by distorting Scripture, spreading misinformation, and inciting political violence. The good news is that these false prophets don’t speak for the vast majority of American Christians, many of whom are speaking out to finally deflate the claims of a right-wing monopoly on faith, reclaiming our religion and its prophetic voice for the Gospel’s true values of love, truth, peace, equality, and social justice.”
Faithful America engages in public acts to call attention to what it considers the contradiction between the message of white Christian nationalists and the actual message of Scripture. Another of its recent targets has been the Re-Awaken America tour featuring Michael Flynn.
Christian nationalism is a political ideology that merges American and Christian identities with the goal of empowering conservative Christians to guide society under their beliefs. Critics accuse this movement of reinterpreting or destroying the historic concept of separation of church and state.
The top 20 offenders, according to Faithful America, are:
- Greg Abbott, governor of Texas
- Steve Bannon, political strategist, Catholic activist and former aide to Donald Trump
- David Barton, pseudo-historian, activist and founder of WallBuilders
- Lauren Boebert, U.S. representative from Colorado
- Ted Budd, U.S. representative from North Carolina
- Ron DeSantis, governor of Florida
- Sean Feucht, activist and worship leader
- Mayra Flores, U.S. representative from Texas
- Michael Flynn, retired general, conspiracy theorist and megachurch speaker
- Franklin Graham, evangelist and president of both the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and Samaritan’s Purse
- Marjorie Taylor Greene, U.S. representative from Georgia
- Josh Hawley, U.S. senator from Missouri
- Kristina Karamo, Secretary of state candidate in Michigan
- Kari Lake, gubernatorial candidate in Arizona
- Blake Masters, U.S. senate candidate in Arizona
- Doug Mastriano, gubernatorial candidate in Pennsylvania
- Mary Miller, U.S. representative from Illinois
- Tony Perkins, pastor and president of Family Research Council
- Joseph Strickland, bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Tyler, Texas
- J.D. Vance, author and U.S. senate candidate from Ohio
“Whether they speak from the halls of power or the front of a sanctuary, each individual on this list has a track record of misusing and appropriating Christianity for their own political gain at the expense of everyone else,” said Kate Froehlich project coordinator. “Our goal is to expose Christian nationalism’s distortion of our faith and to hold unjust rulers and corrupt religious leaders accountable — just as Jesus and the Hebrew prophets did.”