In the Gospel of Luke, Jesus tells the parable of Lazarus and the rich man, and in doing so, he paints a vivid picture of a mighty gulf that stands between hell and a VIP spot at Abraham’s bosom.
Well, an unprecedented development in Christianity was made over the past week, because now there’s an even bigger gulf: the one between what Jerry Falwell Jr. says and what Jerry Falwell Jr. does.
In a shocking revelation that tempted even the most sex-positive people to kink-shame, Falwell resigned as president of Liberty University amid reports he watched his wife, Becki, have sex with a former Miami hotel pool attendant. The scandal, which was first reported by Reuters, allegedly spans six years.
Falwell didn't comment for the Reuters story, but the night before the exposé went live, he issued a statement to the Washington Examiner claiming the pool attendant, Giancarlo Granda, tried to extort money from the couple over what Falwell called an affair between Granda and Becki.
Liberty University is a strictly Christian institution whose honor code dictates that “sexual relations outside of a biblically ordained marriage between a natural-born man and a natural-born woman are not permissible.”
That raises questions: If a married couple agrees to indulge a cuckolding kink, does that count as sex outside marriage? Cuckolds get off on, and often immediately (ew) after, watching their wives have sex with other men. On the macro scale, can't that be considered sexual relations within a marriage, especially if the wife was into it, too? Is there a sloppy seconds or priming the pump exception to rules against fornication and/or adultery? Are Christians allowed an assist? Discuss.
Sadly, when the Washington Post reported on the scandal, it didn't delve into that thorny theological point. Instead, they reached out to Dallas megachurch pastor and fellow Donald Trump evangelical cheerleader Robert Jeffress, who said: “Jerry has done a great job in building a tremendous school.”
He continued, “The allegations, if true, should be a warning of the destructive power of sin.”
Or at least a warning of the destructive power of getting caught, which is something easier to avoid if one doesn't unzip one's pants for an Instagram photo.
Jeffress' may seem like an insipid rebuke by someone trying to look principled while also not burning bridges, but it’s a scathing admonition compared with Jeffress' response to Trump’s alleged relationship with porn star Stormy Daniels, about which Jeffress said, “Evangelicals know they’re not compromising their beliefs in order to support this great president.”
Judging by this comparably tame response to what Christians perceive as Trump's sexual transgression — adultery — we can deduce that Jeffress thinks cuckolding is worse than paying hush money to a porn star who is giving you some trim behind your wife’s back.
It’s not like Falwell is the only Trump-aligned conservative figure who swings like he commutes to work on a bungee cord. Back in the 1990s, conservative lobbyist and convicted felon Roger Stone and his wife were reportedly regulars at a sex club that was rampant with extramarital orgies. It has also been alleged that former Trump campaign chairman and convicted felon Paul Manafort made his wife have sexual relations with other men for his arousal.
And look, if it gets your rocks off seeing your spouse get railed by other consenting adults, that’s fine. Judge not, and all that. But Jeffress' condemning comments to the Washington Post contradict his prior statement made only two years earlier when he said Trump's cheating on his pregnant wife with a porn star and buying her silence was “totally irrelevant.”
Odder still, there's some evidence that kinky conservatives generally tend to favor cuckolding. That might explain why they often call their political opponents "cucks." Either it takes one to know one, or they dream of seeing the people they love get screwed by a liberal. If today's presidential polling holds up, some of them might be having a very sexy night around about Nov. 3.
Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.