Was the Beatitudes Invocation at the Inaugural a Rebuke to Donald Trump?

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When Jesus talked about the qualities that made people “blessed,” he probably was not thinking about someone like Donald Trump. Photo: Carl Heinrich Bloch

Typically listeners don’t pay much attention to the religious invocations delivered at events like today’s inauguration. And typically those invocations shower down specific blessings on the specific politician being honored, deserved or not.

But then there was the invocation at today’s inauguration, delivered by Rev. Samuel Rodriguez, an evangelical Latino who has occasionally been critical of Donald Trump. He came to the podium and simply read the Beatitudes from Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount:

Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are the meek: for they shall possess the land.

Blessed are they who mourn: for they shall be comforted.

Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after justice: for they shall have their fill.

Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.

Blessed are the clean of heart: for they shall see God.

Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.

Blessed are they that suffer persecution for justice’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

And then he sat down. I’m sure I wasn’t the only listener who thought the entire recitation was a rebuke of Donald Trump.

Was the Beatitudes Invocation a Rebuke to Donald Trump?