Donald Trump was asked about his favorite Bible verse in a radio interview Thursday, and he responded by quoting an Old Testament law that Jesus specifically repudiated.
In the interview on WHAM-1180 news radio in Rochester, New York, host Bob Lonsberry asked Mr. Trump if there was “a favorite Bible verse or Bible story that informed your thinking or your character throughout life, sir?”
Mr. Trump responded with an “eye for an eye” Mosaic Law rule, mentioned in several books, primarily Exodus 21, Buzzfeed reported.
“Well, I think a lot. I mean, when we go into the Bible, I think a lot, a lot. And some people, look, eye for an eye, you could almost say that. It’s not a particularly pleasant thing. But you know, if you look at what’s happening in our country, I mean when you see what’s happening in our country, how people are taking advantage of us… we have to be tough and very strong. And we can learn a lot from the Bible, I can tell you.
Unfortunately, “an eye for an eye” is one of the few verses of the Mosaic Law that Jesus designated in the Sermon on the Mount as defeated, by the new covenant that his death and resurrection would seal.
“You have learned that it has been said: An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. But I tell you not to resist evil: but if one strikes you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also,” Jesus said in the famous sermon Matthew 5.
It is not the first time Mr Trump, who has suggested the IRS audit him because he is such a strong Christian, has fallen on his face in his efforts to appeal to grassroots Christians in the Republican Party.
In a speech at Liberty University, he said the Evangelical school’s slogan came from “Two Corinthians,” rather than the near-universal spoken conventions of “Second Corinthians” or “the second letter of [St.] Paul to the Corinthians.