American Jesus has always seemed like he came from a different continuity than the character contained in the original novel. It's been this way since those early Protestants first fled to North American shores. The modern depiction of American Jesus is a stark departure from the temple-whipping, prostitute-befriending, free-healthcare-giving bro of old, and it's only gotten worse over time.
Consider this recent NPR interview with Russell Moore, who was once a top official for the Southern Baptist Convention. Moore was quick to criticize Trump from his earliest campaign days for his being, among other things, prideful; greedy; wrathful; envious; lusting; gluttonous; and even slovenly. Moore has a new book out, titled Losing Our Religion: An Altar Call For Evangelical America, and spoke with NPR about the radical shifts he's seen in Evangelicals, which includes this incredibly horrifying anecdote:
[The book] was the result of having multiple pastors tell me, essentially, the same story about quoting the Sermon on the Mount, parenthetically, in their preaching — "turn the other cheek" — [and] to have someone come up after to say, "Where did you get those liberal talking points?" And what was alarming to me is that in most of these scenarios, when the pastor would say, "I'm literally quoting Jesus Christ," the response would not be, "I apologize." The response would be, "Yes, but that doesn't work anymore. That's weak." And when we get to the point where the teachings of Jesus himself are seen as subversive to us, then we're in a crisis.
Jesus Fucking Christ. That's about all I have to say about that.
He was a top church official who criticized Trump. He says Christianity is in crisis [Scott Detrow, Gabriel J. Sánchez, and Sarah Handel / NPR All Things Considered]